ISTANBUL (Kurdistan 24) – Would you pay to get slapped hard in the head repeatedly? Really hard.
If yes, you may want to visit a barbershop in Istanbul to get just that service, and a haircut. Then pay for both.
Barber Mehmet Bayraktar became an Internet sensation in Turkey last year when he began uploading videos of his beating of customers on YouTube, some of which got half-a-million views.
There is consent, of course.
Men and women alike started flocking to his shop from all over the country.
He claims there are at times even queues of people waiting to get a good session of slapping from his hands.
Sporting sunglasses and a suit, Bayraktar welcomed Kurdistan 24 this week and displayed his beating skills.
“My difference from other barbers is that I make sure you get rid of a headache. I do it professionally. Think of it as a massage, a way of dealing with a migraine,” he explained.
It all began when a customer told Bayraktar that he had a migraine and asked if the barber could slap him lightly.
“Then more clients came up with the same complaint. They wanted one or two slaps. I realized that they actually like it. So, I began hitting hard and harder,” the barber who moved to Istanbul two years ago from the Kurdish province of Mus said.
A haircut costs 150 Turkish Liras (38 USD) at Bayraktar’s. Clients asking to get beaten up will have to pay an additional 100 Liras.
A man who came to Istanbul all the way from the Aegean city of Izmir some 470 kilometers (292 miles) south, claimed he got rid of a persistent headache.
“I watched his videos online. I even heard some famous people come here to get slapped,” the man said.
Another customer said the beating by Bayraktar had become an addiction for him.
“I was really intrigued by the idea. How come people pay to get slapped? So, I decided to try it, and now I can’t stop,” he said.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany