Published: October 26, 2011
Later that evening, when Watson's relaxing back at the home barbershop, his phone starts lighting up. "They're calling back already," he says. The fliers he gave out are already working.
People buy his brushes for the same reason they get their hair cut in his kitchen— mostly because he's good at what he does, of course. But it's also because so many people have someone in their family like Watson — a kid gone bad or going nowhere. They're not just supporting the brush-selling barber. They're rooting for the redemption he represents. These simple brushes and this little barbershop, seemingly small things to some people, are to others proof you can turn your life around and make something of yourself, no matter how far you once fell.
"It gives hope around here," Watson says, gesturing outside the window, where his neighbors are hanging out on the street corner below. They're his customers and his admirers, the ones who look up to him now. "Hope, 'cause it shows you don't have to rely on someone else all the time. You can make your job. You can make your life."
> Email Detroitblogger John