“When you’re in my chair, you’re in my world,” says Zach Massela, 39; and although I was only sitting on a stool next to his chair, after declining an offer to sit on his lap, I still learned quite a few things about him. He’s a bourbon drinker who met his wife at a bar. He’s a craftsman who spent ten years in antique restoration. He uses a beard comb that he personally carved out of wood. He collects taxidermy and creates “punkadermy.” He even made beard oil that sells at the shop.
“I do a lot of weird sh*t,” Zach smiles, “I’ve always been good with my hands.” He shows me pictures of wire sculptures he’s made; of his own arm, of a coyote head wearing a monocle, in which he incorporates the actual jaw bone of a coyote (he coins this as “punkadermy”), and numerous, personally excavated bird skulls. Tired of his previous job working all things maintenance on a WWII tugboat in Newport Harbor, Zach decided to attend the Real Barbers College in Anaheim. After completing the program with flying colors, Zach earned his chair at Harbor Barber.
“I always knew when I got my hair cut, how f*cking rad I felt, you know what I mean? After a good cut, you feel like a million bucks. I get paid to hang out with people and make them feel good about themselves… That’s a really cool thing.”
By Nick Mayer