Jón Gnarr - sacked over a mohawk and walked home crying

By Kolbeinn Tumi Daðason
"When I was 14 years old I got a job in the Glæsibær supermarket in the meat table. I was so pleased with myself."
"When I was 14 years old I got a job in the Glæsibær supermarket in the meat table. I was so pleased with myself." Vísir/Ernir
"It's a true story, I walked home crying from work," says Jón Gnarr, former Mayor of Reykjavík. He says that he was going through some old stuff at home today, and unearthed this old photo that brought back the memories. On the photo we see Jón Gnarr, around 20 years old wearing a wig. The story behind the wig is a strange one, which Jón shared on Facebook today.

"When I was 14 years old I got a job in the Glæsibær supermarket in the meat table. I was so pleased with myself," Jón says. He had been working there for about 10 days when he decided to have his hair cut.

"I think it was Ólafur Elíasson who later fronted the InDefence group, who gave me this nice mohawk," explains Jón, though he isn't quite certain who did the deed. He had shown up for work the next day when the store manager came to him.

"When I got to the meat table the store manager, Guðmundur, said that I couldn't be there because of my hair," says Jón. He was then made to work in storage, in the back, but even that was a brief stop.

"Later that day I was announced that they had to let me go. They wouldn't put up with this."

Jon Gnarr was the mayor of Reykjavik from 2010 to 2014.Vísir
Started crying

When Vísir talked to Jón about this, he says that he took the sacking harshly. He had been happy at work and had been pondering a future in the meat industry.

"It was really fun to serve meat and wear a robe. But my potential career as a meat packer came to a screeching halt then and there," says Jón who went to his home crying after having been sacked.

"I was so bummed out about this that just started crying. I walked home from the supermarket all the way home. My dad was home and he noticed something wasn't right."

Jón's father didn't dwell long on the problem, but took off with his son in tow to the closest hair salon.

"He loudly asked: Do you have a wig for this boy here?"

Jón had tried on a few female wigs before they found one that everyone said suited him quite well. Jón's father then dropped him off at the supermarket where Jón went to see the manager.

"Poor Jón. I had such high hopes about you," were the store manager's words, according to Jón. The wig had only been the icing on the cake, and Jón did not get his job back.

Jon Gnarr has played many roles through his career as a comedian and actor.Vísir
Concerns employee's rights

Jón recollects as he participated in the making of an educational video for the VR union that is based on this story. A young boy had played Jón's part.

"It concerns the rights and duties of employees," says Jón who hopes that sackings like the one he got are a thing of the past now.

"I never realized that there was something wrong about this. I just thought it was really cool," says Jón who adds that his father had agreed with him. about that.

As for the wig, Jón kept it in a safe place for years before it "got lost during some good drunken night out."

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