“Can you just trim the back and sides?”

English Lesson: Can you just trim the back and sides?

You're getting your hair cut at a barber shop. You don't want the barber to cut very much, so you say this.

Can you just trim the back and sides?

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Can you (do something)?

This is a way to ask someone to do something. It's appropriate for:

  • a boss to use with the people who work for him or her
  • a customer to use with a store employee
  • a parent to use with his or her children
  • asking a friend to help you with something

"Can you ___" is more direct than asking "Could you..."

Sometimes a person will include "maybe" in this question:

Can you maybe call him and tell him to meet us there?

Can you maybe turn the volume down just a little?

just (do something)

You use this phrase when the action you're describing seems easy, simple, fast, unimportant, or unexciting:

I just googled "new york florist" and that was the first shop that came up, so I called them.

A: What did you do this weekend?

B: I just sat at home and watched T.V.

trim (someone's hair)

"Trimming" something means cutting it just a little to make it look nice. When you "trim" someone's hair, you just cut it a little bit.

You can talk about what part of a person's hair is being cut:

She trimmed the bottom.

Can you trim the sides and leave it long in the back?

Aside from hair, you can also "trim":

  • a beard or mustache
  • a hedge (a wall of bushes)
  • fat from a piece of meat