Among the Believers

Illustration by Gary Locke

I paid someone to shave me on my first morning as a Democratic activist. It was expensive, but very pleasant. The barber didn’t take debit cards, so I had to run to an ATM in order to pay him. When I returned wheezing in my well-chosen tweed and lavender cashmere sweater combo—I thought hard about my outfit that day—I apologized. “No problem,” he said. “Happy to wait. You look so handsome.”