Learning a trade

Essay by ilnet2000College, Undergraduate September 2006

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Learning to Cut Hair

I still remember the day that my father advised me to learn the trade of cutting hair. I was probably at the age of 13, and my father recently acquired his own hairstyling business. Being young and naive, I had no other choice but to help my father in his new found endeavor. Thus, in causality, this event marked the beginning of my growth as an individual and as a member of society.

Learning to cut hair was a journey of its own. It was a very lengthy and demanding undertaking, but it was worth the effort. I spent almost every summer of my teenage life, practicing and improving my barbering skills. In the beginning, I would give gratis haircuts to my friends and close relatives. I would learn from my mistakes and continue this process for quite some time. I particularly remember a period where I gave haircuts in my high school bathroom.

I would charge a 5 dollar fee and use the profit I made, to pay for lunch. This moment in time, seems very trivial but it was crucial in my development.

When I reached a level of competence I began to work with my father at his shop. For the first two summers, I helped my father with various work related chorus. For instance, I advertised his business by giving out flyers. I also kept the barbershop sanitary and made sure everything was in order. Eventually, I began the task that I was truly interested in, cutting hair.

Working with my father was a great experience. First of all, the environment I was surrounded by helped me understand how "life" was like out of the classroom. From the many conversations I had with my clients, I gathered that the "real" world required...