Giacinto with a customer in his shop, 1966

Giacinto pt. 2 | Barber Life

Learn about Giacinto's life in Italy in part 1!

In 1948, he arrived in the bustling city of Montreal, Canada. Shortly afterwards in 1953, he managed to deal his way into owning his own barbershop. It was there he would shave and cut hair from the front parlor for 10 cents apiece, while he and his wife would raise three kids from the cramped remainder of the home.

It wasn't long until he became a staple of his blue-collar community, with 80 customers per day when it was at its peak. Eventually he would become known as "The Legend".

As his kids grew up and moved out, things gradually started winding down for the barbershop. It was no longer the hectic early days where he barely had time to have lunch. Despite the passing of the decades and the coming of old age, he kept on going. After decades working out of his home, many of his customers were still loyal, some even coming out of town just to get a haircut. The love he had and the care he took for his shop was second only to that for his family.

Needless to say, things only got crazier in the world with every passing year.

Along with styles of haircut, entire trends of society, politics and especially technology would come and go — yet the barbershop would remain. Giacinto was extremely practical, not having any interest in hopping on any of these bandwagons. He used the same mechanical cash register, littered with ages-old pins and souvenirs collected over the years, until his dying day.

The only technology his barbershop would see in 40 years was a color TV, a bumbling electric latherer and a shavette razor.

What the barbershop really meant to his family solidified after his passing in 2009, when the building had to be sold as the family moved moved away throughout North America. But that's a story for another day.

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