Character Sketch of “The Barber” The story Just Lather, That’s All by Hernando Tellez, is about making the right decisions. It’s about a barber who must face the choice of taking revenge by killing Captain Torres, an executioner or to provide him with the perfect shave and thus preserve his job and his reputation. While he condemns himself to an uncertain future, he finally makes the right decision. “The Barber” is displayed as a heroic character by portraying intelligence, honour and morality.
Firstly he shows intelligence, by considering the consequences to the choices he is facing. He had many chances to kill Captain Torres however his moves were slow as his thoughts: “I would have to flee, leaving all I have behind, and take refuge far away, far, far away. But they would follow until they found me. “Captain Torres’ murderer. He slit his throat while he was shaving him, a coward. ” And then on the other side. “The avenger of us all… He was the town barber. No one knew he was defending our cause. ” (Tellez 51) His intelligence is evident throughout the story due to his attempt at being congruent instead of just killing the Captain for revenge. It is also obvious that “The Barber” is an honourable man which further ascertains his heroism. He takes great pride in what he does and seems to be very proud and happy about his job: “But I don’t want to be a murderer, no sir. You came to me for a shave. And I perform my work honourably… I don’t want blood on my hands.
Just lather, that’s all. ” (Tellez 51) It took him a lot of effort to make the choice he did – to not lose his job and his reputation as the best barber. Another way in which he portrays heroism is through morality. He realized that killing does not bring peace and instead aggravates anger among others and thus increases the problem: “No one deserves to have someone else make the sacrifice of becoming a murderer. What do you gain by it? Nothing.
Others come along and still others, and the first ones kill the second ones and they the next ones and it goes on like this until everything is a sea of blood. ” (Tellez 50) “The Barber” comes to the conclusion that he does not have the right to kill someone else and learns, as Captain Torres puts it, “Killing isn’t easy”. Through his demonstration of intelligence, honor, and morality, Hernando Tellez gives the readers a perfect example of a civilized human in a memorable character “The Barber”.