D.c. Gigs: Cutting Congress' Coifs (Transcript) | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

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D.C. Gigs: Cutting Congress' Coifs

MS. REBECCA SHEIR

00:00:03
We move now from getting to and from your place of employment to actually being there and working a pretty one-of-a-kind job. Joe Quatrone is a barber, but that's not what makes him unusual. What sets this guy apart is his clientele because this particular barber trims the coifs and shaves the beards of Congress. In this month's edition of "D.C. Gigs" Marc Adams takes us inside Quatrone's small barbershop tucked away in the Rayburn House Office Building.

MR. JOE QUATRONE

00:00:32
Hi, Tony, how are you, sir? Come on in.

TONY

00:00:35
First class.

QUATRONE

00:00:35
Okay.

QUATRONE

00:00:36
My name is Joe Quatrone and I'm a barber at the House of Representatives. We cut the hair of the most of powerful people in the world around the country. Members, senator, vice-president.

QUATRONE

00:00:53
What they gonna be, beyond a whole week? Until Friday?

TONY

00:00:58
Through Friday, yes. We have the transportation bill we're likely to come in for and there's hundreds of amendments at least as of right now.

QUATRONE

00:01:06
I did cut Tip O'Neill and other speakers and I had a pleasure of meet the president, the prime minister of Italy in the shop. And also I had Vice President Ford, Al Gore and so on.

TONY

00:01:32
I let it get a little long this time. It's been a while.

QUATRONE

00:01:33
Yes, that's okay. More to cut.

TONY

00:01:35
There we go.

QUATRONE

00:01:37
We don't mind that.

QUATRONE

00:01:39
At first what you do you kind of see what type of haircut they have, if they come every 10 days, if they come every month, or they come every two weeks. More or less, you have to try to maintain the hair as they have, you know, not to try to change or anything like that. Some that come here to relax, you don't want to be talking. And they come in here, they close their eyes because they work hard back and forth.

TONY

00:02:08
It seems like every time I try to get in here in the last couple of weeks something would come up.

QUATRONE

00:02:11
When you're busy and work hard, that's how it is. Sometimes it get away from you.

TONY

00:02:16
Yes, also we've been in five weeks in a row so time to get away.

QUATRONE

00:02:20
A few times I had an incident where they come in to get a haircut and you have halfway up to the haircut and bells ring and they have to run out to go vote. And a lot of times, they come back or sometimes they have to watch work and they won't come back until next day.

QUATRONE

00:02:42
It's the vacuum. But you're trying to vacuum with the hair off of the head and the shirt so they can look clean and neat. I really love my job and the people that I'm working with. They've been extra kind to me since I've been here, staff members and everyone that I deal with.

TONY

00:03:09
Looking good. Looks good Joe, as always.

QUATRONE

00:03:11
All right.

TONY

00:03:11
All right.

QUATRONE

00:03:12
There's a lot of people that would like to be in my position. Other barbers that would like to have this job and I've been fortunate and lucky to be here.

SHEIR

00:03:25
That was barber Joe Quatrone speaking with producer Marc Adams inside Quatrone's Capital Hill shop. If you know of a distinctively D.C. Gig you think we should be covering on the show, we'd love to hear from you. Just send a note to metro@wamu.org or find us on Facebook, at facebook.com/metroconnection.org.

SHEIR

00:04:19
In a minute, subterranean slime. Roughly, how large is that tunnel?

MS. KIM BENDER

00:04:25
I've seen different reports saying that it could be the size of a bus. A bus could drive through this tunnel.

SHEIR

00:04:30
We visit a relic of a very different D.C. in our monthly series "The Location." That and other rarities coming up on "Metro Connection," here on WAMU 88.5.
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