Stifled By Brick-And-Mortar, Barber Took Business On Road

Jon Shiflett is shown in this April 2022 photo in Cullman, Ala.  Having spent the last four years training under Charlie Heaton at The Barbershop, Shiflett always aspired to be the owner of his own business. Frustrated by climbing rent prices and lease agreements stinting his vision, Shiflett abandoned the brick-and-mortar mentality and instead purchased a used FedEx truck.  ( (Amanda Shavers/The Cullman Times via AP)
Jon Shiflett is shown in this April 2022 photo in Cullman, Ala. Having spent the last four years training under Charlie Heaton at The Barbershop, Shiflett always aspired to be the owner of his own business. Frustrated by climbing rent prices and lease agreements stinting his vision, Shiflett abandoned the brick-and-mortar mentality and instead purchased a used FedEx truck. ( (Amanda Shavers/The Cullman Times via AP)

CULLMAN, Ala. (AP) — Through blood, sweat, and...barbicide, Jon Shiflett is keeping the long honored tradition of barbering alive, but putting the experience into high gear. Shiflett is bringing his shop to you.

More punk rock than quartet, his mobile barbershop Beggars & Thieves keeps the feeling of nostalgia but injects it with a high-octane dose of Shiflett’s personality.

Having spent the last four years training under Charlie Heaton at The Barbershop, Shiflett always aspired to be the owner of his own business. Frustrated by climbing rent prices and lease agreements stinting his vision, Shiflett abandoned the brick-and-mortar mentality and instead purchased a used FedEx truck.

“When I started looking, rent prices were just ridiculously expensive. and then I would have to go to the landlords and ask if I could paint, ask if I could hang stuff on the walls or change anything. It was just a hassle. This way I can really make it my own, I don’t have to answer to anyone,” Shiflett said.

With only a little help from his stepfather Damon Monk, and Vinemont High School student Michael Foust, Shiflett transformed the interior of the vehicle. Littered with Star Wars memorabilia, skateboard decks, rally racing photographs, irreverent stickers and antique barbering tools, the shop is a visual playground for clients — and as relaxed as Shiflett himself.

“I just want to give people a place they can come to get away for a minute. No politics, no drama, no craziness. Just come chill and get your hair cut,” Shiflett said.

Unburdened by the competitive need to outperform existing businesses, Shiflett honors those who came before him.

“I’m not wanting to step on anyone’s toes. They have their thing and I have mine. This is just my version of a traditional old school barbershop.”

With plans to park at The Man Cave Market on Fridays, Shiflett is hoping to expand his territory organically.

“I’m hoping to find more places to go the more word gets around. I wouldn’t say there are definite plans. I’m sort of winging it, I just wanna cut hair.”

Shiflett will be offering $15 haircuts ($12 for all first responders and active military) complete with a neck shave and hot towel treatment, and $8 dollar shaves and beard trims.

To find the location of the Beggars & Thieves truck, visit their Facebook page.