Cesar owns a barber shop. He cuts people’s hair, and trims their beards. He has been doing it for twenty years, and he loves his work. When he was only 19, he got his barber’s license in New York State.

Cesar talks to everyone. His clients are mostly men. They tell him about their lives. Sometimes people are having problems and Cesar helps them talk through the possible solutions. People show him pictures of their kids, the houses they have just bought, and projects they’re working on.

Andre is getting his eyebrows shaped

Cesar’s clients are very loyal; some of them have been going to get their hair cut with Cesar for a decade. One of his younger clients, Andre, describes why he keeps coming back: “I love this place. The music is on point, and C’s the best. He’s always got good people around him.”

Andre just got a line-up (also known as an “edge up”) and is now having his eyebrows shaped. “He keeps me looking fresh. I can’t slip up or my girl will let me know.”

Cesar got his first job cutting hair at “Cutz & Trendz”, the shop where he used to get cuts as a kid. He knew the owner, Dayshone, and knew that it would be a good place to learn about the craft of barbering. Dayshone thought of Cesar like a nephew he had always known. He and Cesar’s mom had gone to high school together and even though they weren’t great friends, they had mutual respect for each other.

Cesar had been working there only six months when Dayshone started talking to him about his future and his goals. “I see your skills, but I also see you know how to relate to people.” Dayshone said to him one afternoon when they had closed the shop and were cleaning up. “You need to keep focused and start saving up money. One day, you’re gonna have your own spot.”

“You think so?” Cesar asked, surprised by Dayshone’s impression of him.

“Hell yeah! Knowing who people are, what they want, and how to help them is 90 percent of this game.” Dayshone affirmed.

“Alright, as long as you show me how to manage all the business stuff,” Cesar replied. He hadn’t thought about owning a barber shop, but he respected Dayshone’s opinion and didn’t disagree that he had always loved people and helping them however he could.

“We start tomorrow,” Dayshone declared. “Be here at six.”

“Ok, Day’,” Cesar agreed. “See you in the a.m.”

Continue [insert link]

Comprehension Questions

  1. How long has Cesar been cutting hair?

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2. Why did Cesar get his first job at Dayshone’s shop?

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3. Why does Dayshone think Cesar should consider opening his own business?

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4. Why does Andre like Cesar’s shop?

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Fill-in-the-Blank

Use these words to fill-in the blanks from the reading:

line-uplicenseshoprespected
skillsopinionbeardssaving
jobsolutionsrelatedisagree
  1. Sometimes people are having problems and Cesar helps them talk through the possible ____________________.
  2. He hadn’t thought about owning a barber shop, but he ____________________ Dayshone’s ____________________ and didn’t ____________________ that he had always loved people and helping them however he could.”
  3. Cesar got his first ____________________ cutting hair at “Cutz & Trendz”, the shop where he used to get cuts as a kid.
  4. He cuts people’s hair, and trims their ____________________.
  5. Andre just got a ____________________ and is now having his eyebrows shaped.
  6. “I see your ____________________, but I also see you know how to ____________________ to people.”
  7. When he was only 19, he got his barber’s ____________________ in New York State.
  8. You need to keep focused and start ____________________ up money.
  9. Cesar owns a barber ____________________.

Now use the words in a new context:

line-uplicenseshoprespects
skillsopinionbeardsave
jobsolutionsrelatedisagree

CONTINUE [INSERT LINK]

More info

If you want to learn how to cut hair, including getting a license in New York State, there are many programs, including the Educational Opportunity Center’s Cosmetology program.