Jul 23, 2006

Everything New Is Old Again

Or is it What Has Gone Around Will Come Around Again...something something...ta te tum tum ta te tem then the 18 minute drum solo...

Doesn't matter.

Like Dante Hicks, I have realised that sometimes it's okay to go back to where you were, or to stay in the same place. Except my change of life (or return back to life the way it was before it changed to the way it used to be up until about twenty minutes ago) involves a beard and not any sort of life-choice, like whether or not to marry Mrs. Kevin Smith or your overly friendly boss.

No, really.

You see, the day I got out of high school, I started a lot of things. One of those things was to enter onto the road of Facial Hair Ownership. I carefully weighed all the options, from the ultra-glamourous Vincent Price pencil-thin moustache all the way to a Dan Haggerty broom (pre-heroine fire,) and I ended up with a sort of full Dutch Masters moustache and goatee combo which did a few things for me, or so I thought:

Well, it did two of the six. I'll leave it up to you to decide which. It'll be more fun for you and less depressing for me if I didn't reveal the truth.

So I wore that beard since 1985, with only one and a half years off (pun intended) while I served a sentence in Heck (aka Sutherland's Lumber.) And for those of you who care enough to follow this blog on a monthly or thereabouts basis, you might recall me saying something about never shaving on weekends, and deciding that since the Perdido Key vacation was, in essence, a nine day weekend I would use the time constructively, ie in constructing a full beard.

Now what I did not mention above was that when I was still a wee bairn and was still using my beard training wheels I tried a full beard. My father would grow one every winter for deer hunting season, on the grounds that it:

  • made him look diabolical

  • attracted deer who liked strange men

  • helped keep his chin warm in winter

  • was abominable to my mother

Well, at least two of those are true. My mom hated it, and it kept his face warm, as well as keeping his bare cheeks from startling deer. My father was nut-brown from the sun so I don't know how a deer could have mistaken his cheeks for anything other than part of a tree trunk, but he was the hunter, not me.

When his beard grew in, it did so in about two days, and was instantly as thick and luxurious as a racoon coat. His hair was always military-short, and salt-and-pepper grey, and his beard would grow in the most handsome iron-grey colour, with white and black shot all through it. He's keep it combed neatly, and trimmed it regularly.

So of course, I had to aim for that lofty goal. But unfortunately, my mother's French bare-faced genes hit me pretty hard, and while I could manage a pretty impressive set of muttonchop sideburns and a fine grown of chin hair my cheeks always failed miserably to fill out. So, abandoning hope, I went with the chin-whiskers.

Years passed. Florida came and imbued me with it's sunshine powers, and I launched out on the Full Beard Crusade. Things did well for a while, the hair ensued, and my hirsute desires were fulfilled--a passable full beard. Granted a little thin over the middle jawbone, but with time and careful training I assured myself I could make it work.

And to be quite frank? I got tired of it. Too much work, honestly. I thought for sure that having a full beard would cut down on shaving time, but no, it only increased it, because I had more, careful trimming to do. Scissoring was a nightmare, because there was so darn much of it. And still, the middle was thin, so I looked like I had grown a huge set of sideburns to go with my goatee and moustache, and had gotten some chocolate milk or dirt or something down my jawbones.

So this afternoon, after careful examination and much soul-searching, and asking myself WWDHD* I went ahead and trimmed the extra foliage off, revealing my old, tried-and-true, diabolical, strange woman attracting self. Smooth cheeked, short sideburned, and ginger and grey chinny-chin-chin. And I'm cool with that. I like my setup the way it is (again,) and I shan't get any more strange looks from people who were accustomed to me being clean-cheeked, but who were too ashamed to ask me if I had grown a beard or if I had been wallowing in a bowl of chocolate pudding powder and forgotten to wash.

So. Welcome back, goatee. Hello again, moustache. Next month? Perhaps I'll just shave off the goatee and start on a pair of Daliesque handlebar mousatches. How exciting!

* What Would Dante Hicks Do?


Nancy Dancehall said...

(LaVey AND Dita...I'm impressed! Quick...what's their connection?)

Ok, so post a picture already. Let's see the new look.

Irrelephant said...

She likes guys with creepy beards?

I would think it's Manson--she married the goof, and he's probably LaVey's son, or thinks he is.

Unless LaVey was once a champagne glass burlesque stripper, in which case I REALLY don't want to know.

Picture, eh? Hmmmmmmm.

Vulgar Wizard said...

I made you look diabolical AND it attracted girls who like strange men. I saw it do both. I was there. It was interesting.

Dante would say that he's not supposed to wear a beard today and go to work with it untrimmed and sticking out all over the place with a clump of oatmeal just under the chin, presumably tucked away for safe keeping.

For the record, I'm all for the handlebar. THAT would be BUUUUUUHHHHHHNNNNNNNNGGGGGGG!!!!!

Vulgar Wizard said...

Oh, I meant IT made you look diabolical . . . can you fix that???

Caffeinated Mommy said...

I'm with VW, you should definitely do a handlebar. And then you should always wear a bike bell and ring it every five minutes.
And wear a pink and white basket around your waist. And put a doll in it!
THAT would be awesome. I'd take pictures. : )

Liz said...

I'm feeling all inspired by this post and growing mine back, too - in your honor ;o)

(Eastern European genes be damned!)