Sunday, 22 February 2009

25 Random Things about my beard

1. I started growing it in early December 2008 after a week of not shaving.

2. The early stages of beard growth are the hardest because your face is not use to it and it's prickly.

3. Old friends pretend not to recognise you when they haven't seen you for a while...

4. ...but end up being polite and saying "Go for it!" and "Why not" whilst muttering under their breaths: "It must be something to do with his wife being pregnant..."

5. For a short while you feel more intelligent.

6. Glasses help with the academic image and also accentuate your eyes to the onlooker, stopping them being lost in two hairy craters that were your eye sockets.

7. Shopkeepers think you could be a homeless person, until you open your mouth and ask for a mineral water to go with your copy of The Guardian.

8. Even unkempt bushy beards (like mine) require some pruning if you are to avoid blocking the food access orifice (the mouth).

9. Sometimes you catch yourself in the mirror and you get a shock. Who is that man?

10. As a consequence of point 9 you spend more time in front of the mirror.

11. My kids are convinced that I store food inside my beard for unscheduled secret snacks. (I blame Roald Dahl's 'The Twits' for that. But they are not wrong).

12. My beard is particularly coarse just after being washed and I long for its greasy foodiness to return. OMG, this proves I am in a bad, beardy space.

13. As a personal rebranding exercise it has had limited success.

14. Intimacy with loved ones is severely compromised.

15. The temptation to stroke one's beard whilst thinking is overwhelming. This can lead, when in face to face conversation with someone, to people thinking that you are not really listening to them. (Useful in some situations; a problem in most).

16. Inspite of being a big supporter of the folk music revival movement - Fleet Foxes, Mumford & Sons etc... - I don't need to be a beardy to do that.

17. As Che Guevara once said to the American student wanting to help the Bolivian revolution: "Go back to your own country, have a good shave and fight your own ruling class. That's the best way you can help, beardy kid".

18. Witty references to Grizzly Adams, Chewbacca and ZZ Top become tiresome.

19. On the one occasion that I was mugged (in 1989) my street fighting capabilities were seriously compromised by my long hair. (My assailant grapped me by my moptop and spun me round and was about to kick me in the face when my, croptopped friend jumped on his back giving me a chance to run free. Thanks again, Graham). I fear my beard might be an easy grip point for potential muggers.

20. Surely man's inevitable evolutionary direction is towards less hirsutedness (including in the facial region).

21. My favourite aunt, my only grandma and my wife all disapproved of the beard on the same day (yesterday). This cannot be an historical accident, it's fate. The beard must go.

22. My newly born daughter (4 weeks old) might get to used to having a bearded dad and be traumatised when I shave it off.

23. My newly born daughter is not getting proper kisses (the type with varied cheek contact) because I am a prickly monster. This will not do (see point 14).

24. Vanity, although difficult to admit, is an issue. What I might gain with elevated academic gravitas in some circles, I lose in others by looking like an old git with a grey beard. The grey is in a strong 30% minority, flecked on top of the dark, brown 70% undergrowth. I am not about to start zapping the whiteness (as I prefer to call the greyness) on my head with Grecian 2000 but why let the whiteness spread like tangle weed to the lower reaches of your face.

25. Hairballs. No one ever tells you about hairballs but they are a permanent feature. Why? It's obvious isn't it? After eating you lick your lips to clean your chops (surely an evolutionary instinct?) resulting in beard hair collecting in the back of your throat. Unavoidable and quite disgusting.

The beard has just left the room.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

When you get mistaken for your kids Grandad I bet the shaving kit comes out that night!