Overwhelmed James McShane becomes James McShave, Hair-Obsessed Vigilante; Students Fear for Their Locks

Graphic by Dalia Etessami

“We live in terror that our hair—our bangs, our highlights, our experiments with wispy mustaches, our pubes for christ’s sake—just won’t be up to code” said one Columbia junior, addressing the Head of Public Safety’s recent slew of hair-specific accosts. This student, who wishes to remain anonymous for his safety, is not alone in his concerns. Fear has rapidly spread across campus as our beloved ex-head of Public Safety, who now demands he be exclusively referred to as James McShave, has become a self-dubbed head of “Pubic (And Other Hair) Safety.” It seems that he who once ensured that none touch a single hair upon Columbians’ heads, has, himself, become the greatest threat to their locks and tresses. Put bluntly, the man has snapped, like a freshly sharpened pair of hair-cutting shears.

When our publication approached Officer McShave for a comment, he had only this to say: “Crime is unmanageable. But you know what’s not, god dammit: hair! I’m just looking for a little sanity in this amoral, entropic void of a world—and hair gives me that fix.” He concluded his tirade by saying, “I’m the hair-o that Columbia needs, but perhaps not the one she deserves.” McShave then twirled his impeccably waxed handlebar mustache, and dashed away in hot pursuit of a first-year with evidently self-bleached locks. 

Specifically troubling to students has been the sheer quantity of hair related Clery Crime emails McShave has penned to Columbia affiliates since the beginning of No-Shave November: a staggering 2,169 emails, in all. A number of these correspondences are laid out below for your reference:

Clery Crime Alert – Petty Larceny 

On Tuesday November 16, 2021 at approximately 4:30pm, a group of three assumed Barnard students were seen performing buzz cuts on the Barnard Freshman Quad. I, Officer McShave, confronted such persons— hair thieves, the lot of them!—warning them that the growth process for such a ‘do would be awkward, and that they ran the risk of discovering that their heads were, in fact, weird shapes. The suspects in question were undeterred, despite my statement of: “Ladies, how do you expect to find a husband like that?!” The individuals were last seen exiting the quad with looks of scorn on their faces. Please stay alert as we work to apprehend these individuals. 

Clery Crime Alert – Defamation of Character

On Thursday, December 10, 2021 at approximately 2:00am, a threatening email was sent to one President Lee Bollinger from an unlisted email account. The letter in question read: “Pres Bo—Or should I say Pres Bald, Pres Bald-inger. We know it’s a wiggggg. You are not fooling anyone Bald-inger. Haha you bald son of a bitch. Everyone’s gonna know.” Our offices are working tirelessly to apprehend the enactors of such vicious, defamatory threats. Additionally, President Bollinger has asked our office to reaffirm that his hair is “all his own,” “definitely not a wig,” and that he is “genetically gifted with a full, luscious head of hair, he can show you pictures of his maternal grandfather at 93. The old man looks like he has a glossy poodle perched upon his scalp.”

Clery Crime Alert – Violation of Dorm Policy

On Monday, December 3, 2021 at approximately 11:45am, search dogs found evidence of prohibited behavior in McBain Hall during a routine inspection. The remnants of shaved, nutmeg brown pubic hair were found in the eastmost shower of the gender neutral bathroom on the 4th floor. This leads me, Officer McShave, to believe that a student attempted to remove their pubic hair with a razor during a shower earlier that day, in direct violation of the recently revised hair guidelines in Columbia Undergraduate Housing’s Guide to Living. The Department of Pubic Safety has begun questioning residents and searching their rooms for contraband. Rest assured that the perpetrators will be met with disciplinary action to ensure that the traces of hair do not inspire others to engage in similarly dangerous behaviors. 

On Friday, President Bollinger released an official statement regarding the McShave situation. In this statement, Bollinger wrote: “Though the university has tried numerous tactics to get McShave to return to his normal duties as a Public defender, including planting hair at the scene of hair-unrelated crimes,” McShane continues to insist that “crime is temporary, hair is forever.” Bollinger’s statement went on to reveal McShave has been slapped with an indefinite suspension. Only time will tell whether this will successfully quell Officer McShave’s lunacy for locks.