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by David Todd McCarty | Wednesday, November 25, 2015

There’s no better feeling in the world than walking out of a proper barbershop having just had a wonderful experience and looking and feeling your best. It’s transcendent. It’s a wonderful experience—when done right anyway.

The problem, for me, is I hate taking the time necessary to get a haircut, let alone a shave. I have to stop what I’m doing, drive to the barber, potentially wait as much as an hour or more, just for the opportunity to get my 20 minute haircut. I don’t enjoy the community of hanging around in a barbershop shooting the shit and arguing about nonsense. It’s not my style.

Even with the resurgence of vintage culture brought about by the hipster scene, it’s increasingly difficult to find a decent barbershop, especially outside of major urban areas. In 2011, it was the fastest growing business in America, and there has been a resurgence in barbershops for men. But I fear that it was just a trend and when the hipster grooming thing ends, so will the interest in barbering.

It was such a big trend, that traditional salons were getting into the mix, putting in barbershops to compete for the male customer. But I’ve found it’s not really the same thing.

Let me quickly walk you through what a proper Barbershop looks like to me.

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by David Todd McCarty | Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Everyone wants to be home for the holidays, even if only in our dreams, or so says the old carol. Thanksgiving and Christmas are especially difficult times to be away from home. Our thoughts are packed with memories and emotions that at times, quite literally, define who we are, and where we come from, or at the very least say a lot about what we wish were true.

Nostalgia is defined by the dictionary as “a sentimental longing or wistful affection for the past, typically for a period or place with happy personal associations.” The word is actually a Greek compound, consisting of νόστος (nóstos), meaning “homecoming”, a Homeric word, and ἄλγος (álgos), meaning “pain, ache”, and was coined by a 17th-century medical student to describe the anxieties displayed by Swiss mercenaries fighting away from home.

It’s literally a longing so strong that it causes pain. Now that’s powerful stuff.

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by David Todd McCarty | Friday, November 20, 2015

We have a saying in the McCarty family: Often wrong, but never in doubt.  No one has ever accused a McCarty of not having a strong opinion. Even in the face of insurmountable odds, we’re sure we’re going the right way, have the right tools for the job, and understand clearly how to achieve the goal at hand. That’s not to say we haven’t ended up at the bottom of a cliff, or on the wrong side of the barrel of a gun in the course of our efforts.

But we’re confident, not stupid. We realize we get it wrong as often as we get it right, but that doesn’t stop us from believing wholeheartedly in our vision of success. Which is to say, I come by it honestly, and I’m aware of my limitations in rare moments of reflection.

We’re an old Irish clan, so it should come as no big surprise that we have big ideas and strong opinions. We come from an island of Kings. Kingdoms with no power and no wealth. Pride is what we had instead of land and riches.

My family, originally known as the Mac Cárthaigh clan comes from County Cork, which is one of the oldest clans in Ireland. The motto on our coat of arms is, “Nothing is Difficult to the Brave and Faithful.” That’s pretty cocky if you ask me.

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