Before I get started on a very important post about my personal grooming, if you came here for Lovehammer concert and CD reviews then just scroll down. Then come back and learn all about my beard. Then swing by the message board - it's the link over on the right that says "Leper House" - I got rid of the pop up ads and you don't have to register, either. Good times.
I'm not a hairy guy. On the Saffir-Simpson scale, I'd probably be a Category 2. I know Saffir-Simpson is for hurricanes, but I don't think Saffir would mind if I applied it to body hair. Saffir is the one that invented the scale and Simpson just added some crap about storm surge so that he could put his name on it, so I don't care what he thinks.
But I digress. I'm not nearly as manic or hairy as Robin Williams (a Cat 5), but when it comes to facial hair I can compete with the best. I tend to keep the face clean-shaven with a mere two blades instead of the five that Gillette would lead you to believe are necessary. However, every 8 years, I feel the need to grow a beard. My recent trip to the mountains both inspired and provided this opportunity, and I haven't used a razor in 30 days. At least not for shaving. And that's a very important point.
I usually go for the full beard, not one of those silly boy band or Johnny Depp beards where you make a little design or maze on your face. Besides being silly, that would also be entirely too much work - the point of growing a beard is to enjoy freedom from the daily chore of shaving. I considered life as a professional cyclist or female impersonator, but the leg shaving seemed like entirely too much work so I chose accounting. Regular bikini waxes are a good career move, but the leg shaving is optional. But I digress. All I'm really just trying to say is that I look more like Wooly Willy rather than K-Fed. With one exception..
This is the first beard where I have detected gray. In fact it would be hard to miss since it covers about 50% of my chinny chin chin and is an ever present reminder that I will be dead soon. Of course, there are products out there that I could use to "get the gray out," but even though one is called Just for Men I still think it's just still gay. So I'm considering going with the Chester Arthur look. For all you chicks out there that spent history class doodling your name as the Mrs. of your little high school crush, Chester Arthur was our 21st president (1881-1885) after Jimmy Garfield done got shot up. For many, I'm sure his name brings to mind important legislation such as the Pendleton Act or the Tariff Act of 1883, but I remember him as a key transitional executive in facial hair styling. You see, for the first eighty years or so, our chief executives were for the most part clean-shaven. Sure, Marty Van Buren and JQ (Adams) sported some heavy-duty sideburns, but never ventured beyond that. Then Ulysses Grant, being the Civil War badass that he was, reminded his fellow Republicans that he just kicked the South's ass and they could kiss his lily white ass if they thought he was going to shave just for a damn election, thus becoming our first fully bearded prez. Rutherford Hayes and Jimmy Garfield continued this dozen-year run of bearded leadership. However, while serving as VP for Jimmy Garfield, Chester Arthur came home rather lit from an evening out drinking mead and eating pot pies and passed out on the White House lawn. To teach him a lesson, Garfield had the secret service shave a patch of whiskers from his chin, but Arthur pretended nothing was amiss and sported his new style with pride through the remainder of his term and during his own presidency. Four years later, Grover Cleveland took office with merely a moustache in an attempt to reverse the trend. Benjamin Harrison brought the beard back to office in 1889, but when a sickly speechwriter named Hack coughed on him during a meeting, poor Ben went to bed with TB all over his beard and infected his innocent wife Caroline who died from the affliction while he was still in office. The American people freaked and re-elected Grover Cleveland in a landslide. Harrison went on to marry his wife's niece, which creeped a lot of people out, and we haven't had a bearded president since. But I digress.
Before anyone freaks out, Mrs. F'er's TB vaccination is current and she doesn't have any nieces, but I'm still in a quandary about this beard. So I asked myself, what would Jim Morrison do? Some people ask "What would Jesus do?" but in the words of Andy Prieboy, "God got his ass kicked the first time He came down here slumming." Now, normally I don't turn to Jim Morrison for direction in my life because it didn't turn out that great for him, but I just read an extremely cool interview with Jim's old bodyguard (the author is a Lovehammer and Leper Pop fan, so check it out). I'm not a big Doors fan, mainly because there was a Doors CD on the jukebox at the bar I used to hang out at and somebody always used to play The End which usually made me want to break my beer bottle on the bar and use its jagged edges to slice my veins open. I showed restraint as a courtesy to our dedicated barkeeps, but it left me with an undeserved distaste for the Doors. But in reading the interview I grew intrigued with insights it offered into Morrison trying to live as a regular guy while having to deal with all the crap around him. Way more insightful than that Val Kilmer movie. For example, the interview confirmed that Morrison alternately grew a beard and shaved it and quite possibly required the assistance of a professional barber in its removal, but since he died at the age of 27 I didn't get any insights on how to handle the gray.
Honestly, I get kind of bored with it after about a month. I'll spontaneously shave it off one day after deciding I look too much like Al Borland on Home Improvement. Or maybe I'll keep it this time and take a shot at hosting Family Feud. Between the Richard Dawson haircut and the Al Borland beard, I think I have what it takes.
Let's play the Feud!