After working in the hotel business for nearly a decade – most recently as an executive, Michael Moore decided it was time for a change. “I had a gleaming career ahead of me,” he says. “It was fun, but ultimately, not me.”
He left the industry a year ago and, having never cut a single hair before, decided to pursue barbering. After a little formal training, he started working at Uncle Rocco’s in Port Melbourne where he earned his chops. His newfound career has not only sparked a new passion, but given him more time with his two kids.
Broadsheet: Charles is five and Josephine is two. What are they like?
Michael Moore: Literally crazy – but in the most perfect way. Their high energy levels quite honestly ensure there is never a dull moment between either of them. They are also blessed with the most acute sense of adventure and imagination which I have a standing invitation to join them in on. It’s a blast.
BS: Do you remember how you felt when each of them were born?
MM: Total and utter admiration for their mother. We certainly don't see eye to eye on a lot of things, but shit, how do even begin to repay someone back for that gift? Thank you, Catherine.
BS: How has having young kids changed your work routine?
MM: There are two ways to carve this question: the first is obvious, having kids certainly puts pressure on you to set routine and create ritual. There is hardly a minute in my day that is no longer allocated – which I would say is a fair assessment for most parents. What does this mean for work? For me, simply staying on top of my day and being the best barber I can be so that I can finish on a high and make tracks to see my kids in time for bed.
Which brings me to the second part of the question. Without kids I would perhaps still be trudging down the corporate high road pulling ever increasing hours to stay on top. But this wasn't my reality I and soon realised that my biggest pay rise awaited me at home.
With this Charlie and Josephine ultimately helped me take one of the biggest chances in my life by pursuing my passion of barbering and effectively buying me back more time to spend with them. As far as I'm concerned I retired from work 12 months ago - I now spend my days servicing the excellent men of Melbourne, at the best barber shop in Australia with the finest set of colleagues one could ask for. Without Charles and Josephine I would have never have been brave enough to take that step.
BS: Do you cut their hair at the shop?
MM: No, always at home. Charlie and I often imagine we are in our own little barbershop, I'll offer him a refreshment and a movie of choice to pass the time. That buys me about 10 minutes before he's off again. I love it.
BS: What are some of your favourite things to do together?
MM: Food is a large part of our lives so I love exploring the markets with them or taking them to new restaurants.
Otherwise just keeping it simple and allowing them to direct the fun (which isn't difficult given their vivid imaginations).
BS: What do they do that you think is hilarious?
MM: Charlie can quite literally talk underwater which always makes me chuckle. He talks so much he forgets to breathe.
Josephine on the other hand has a wicked little two-step on her. It’s the cutest.
BS: What’re your kids’ biggest milestones to date?
MM: Their generosity and general acceptance of all things. I learn so much from those two.
BS: Has anything surprised you about being a dad?
MM: Only how impossible it is to love something any more.
BS: How are you spending Father’s Day?
MM: Riding my bike 130 clicks out to the family farm, before being met by a hot meal and my kids for a adventure filled afternoon. Homerun homie!
See our Fatherhood interviews with Max Olijnyk, Anthony Ivey, Dave Kerr and Isamu Sawa.