As a general rule, the smaller the English writing is compared to the Chinese writing, the cheaper the shop will be. The shops with no English writing at all probably have the best prices anywhere in San Francisco, but you would be hard pressed to identify what exactly you are buying.
Enticed by the prospect of a haircut for the price of a coffee, I came back two days later. The entire thing lasted about 10 minutes and was the most terrifying and bewildering time I've ever spent in a hairdressers. And I'm pretty terrified and bewildered any time I get my haircut.
Generally when I get my haircut the hairdresser hovers appraisingly around my head for several minutes asking me questions I don't have good answers for. Mr $5's pre-cut chat consisted of pointing at the side of my head and asking "Numma Two?" before turning on the clippers and starting to shave while I attempted to respond.
For 5 minutes we pointed at different parts of my head and yelled numbers at each other while he manuvered the clippers and scissors. Then he said "OK, Good, Sank You.", sprayed water on my hair and took the apron off me.
Amazingly, it didn't actually look too bad. Not quite what I had planned, but certainly not terrible.
When I paid him, I left a $2 tip, which I thought was appropriate based on the other hairdressers I'd visited. Apparently I may as well have got down on my knees and proclaimed him Lord of the Barbers. Grinning widely he said "Oooh, you like, you like!" and then, pointing at both our heads "We have the same. Our haircuts the same." That was a little worrying. His hair was thinning, combed over, and held in place with more mousse than a Canadian forest.
Anyway, here's the final result. It's a little more "square" than I would usually have it. Tina says it looks like I'm in the army. But overall it was a well spent $5.