Monday, April 7, 2008

I think I'm turning Redneck

I ran into Brett on the stairs this morning and it reminded me that I wanted to discuss facial hair on men. (Facial hair on women can basically be summed up in a few words: wax, bleach, tweezers, and electrolysis. Good luck ladies!*) Brett's working on his annual mountain man beard and in the past I've always been a little anti. Well, not necessarily to Brett's beard because he always does something funny with it when he shaves it off and I can appreciate that, but anti to facial hair in general. I blame the late 90s early 00s when the goatee was gracing every face that could even partially grow one. I'm going to be honest and say that I hate the goatee. It just looks skeevy to me and it tainted my feelings towards all facial hair.

But it stems a little deeper than that because I associate not shaving with laziness. Every so often I'll ask a fella why he's growing a beard and his answer is generally along the lines of, "Eh, I was bored." Which, I would like to point out, does not make any sense. If you were bored you would have taken action, and growing a beard takes no effort on your part. Now, if a fella came in with his beard in a french braid, then that would be a good answer. (Note: I will bake cookies for any man who comes to me with his beard in a french braid.) What the guys mean is that they do it because they can. Like they can pee standing up. Or, more to the point, they can get away with it. I can grow the hair on my legs out too but if I did I would be shunned by society and have to go live in a home for the Ugly and Tragic. So I have a hard time getting past the notion that they're not shaving because they're lazy which makes them inherently flawed and automatic bad providers.

And I thought that for a good long time. Until one day a few months ago I was at Borders and this man walked by me with a full beard and instead of thinking, "Ew," I thought, "Hey there, Handsome." And then the earth stopped rotating for a second because it shocked me. I mean, enough to make me put the book down and ponder what had just happened. Because when have I ever thought that a full beard was anything more than a disgusting catch-all for leftover bits of lunch. Never. And yet there I was, feeling like there was a man who could wrassle a bear and provide for the young'uns. And lazy? How can he possibly be lazy when he's busy chopping all that firewood and building a lean-to out back. Since then I've been noticing guys with beards and thinking, "Yeah, alright, I guess I'm on the beard train**," and praying that Alex Trebek grows his mustache back. I really don't know what's come over me.

This has got me thinking that if my standards can change that quickly on something so fundamental as facial hair, what other ones will change? Will I suddenly like rum raisin ice cream? Will I feel like it was a great idea to bring back leggings? Am I going to find myself at a gun show or a Celine Dion concert? I'm a little scared.

*Once upon a time I was in Ralph's and saw this tragic 10 year old girl with a mustache. I desperately wanted to hustle her down to the beauty aisle and say, "Little Girl, let me introduce you to Sally Hansen."
**I'm talking about a full beard here. I'm still morally opposed to goatees.


Andrea said...

Okay so I have a few thoughts on this subject. First of all I am opposed to beards, goatees, mustaches etc. But the other day a certain guy I know showed up with a Luke Danes 5 o'clock shadow and I was totally digging it. Secondly, while I was watching conference yesterday I was noticing how many men in the Tabernacle choir are sporting mustaches. Now, how come men attending BYU or male temple workers can't have facial hair, but members of the choir can?
Oh and PS - Hilarious post! I was laughing out loud, as usual.

Tammy said...

I am going to post an awesome picture of Ryan with his full red beard that I do find irresistible.

courtney said...

i am a lifetime beard fan, but when it comes to the goatee i echo the sentiments of my oft-bearded buddy dale: "the goatee is to the 00's what mullets were to the 90's."

and alex NEEDS that moustache. without out he's a sniveling simp of a canadian. the same goes for tom selleck.

Jennette said...

I miss Alex Trebek's mustache too! I was almost as shocked when Fox 11 newscaster John Beard shaved his 'stache a while ago. How can a man with a name like "Beard" not have any facial hair? I'm on a case-by-case basis when it comes to facial hair. It's not for all but for some guys it actually makes them look better. Happy beard-oogling!

Sam said...

I once thought that I wanted to grow some facial hair, but due to my extreme lack of ability in that area, I abandoned the idea. I am now somewhat opposed to the whole facial hair thing, which allows me to obey that aspect of the BYU-I honor code quite nicely. However, the honor code says that mustaches are allowed. It is very puzzling; do they want a bunch of guys walking around looking like motorcycle cops? I think if you must grow facial hair, it is all or nothing; no 'staches, no goatees, no soul patches, no fu man chus(ok, maybe). Also, if you can pull off a nice handle bar mustache, then my hat's off to you.

Anonymous said...

I just have to jump in here in defense of some goatees. Have you ever seen a bald man with a nice-shaped head that has a well-kept goatee? For the most part, I'm with everyone on how gross they look, especially the really thin kind of long kind that looks like armpit hair that happened to grow in the wrong place. But on a bald man like my husband, they look nice. And they actually take some work. Tim shaved his off recently, but while he had it, he trimmed it daily to make sure it wasn't too bushy and that it had a nice outline. If you're curious, I'll send Rachel a picture and she can post it and there can be a vote. My vote is that facial hair, in general, is gross, but that even a goatee can look quite attractive on a man who has no other hair to groom. Of course, I just lived in the South for 3 years, so I may already be a redneck.

Silvestre Family said...

Have you ever seen my husband with a beard or any facial hair for that matter? Thank goodness he CAN'T grow one! The most I have even seen is a five o'clock shadow!(: I'm so sorry for this tragedy (your temporary lapse of judgment)... I hope it passes quickly

Mr. Hall said...

This is exactly why I grow a beard--it is the only way that I can make it onto Rachel's blog! I am honored to have finally made it by name into one of your postings, even if it is in a revolting manner. I'll have you know that I was intending to shave it off in about a week and a half, but now that you have offered to bake cookies if I put it into french braids, I am considering keeping it for the next year so that it may grow long enough to pull off that feat! (and by the way, if you grow out your leg hair and put it into french braids, I will bake you cookies--that would be awesomely disgusting. . . I think that I would like to see that!). Furthermore, in order to honor your post, I have changed my profile picture with one of my beard that I just now took. I'll write a blog soon about what I intend to do with this gnarly thing for you in the next day or two.

Laura said...

I think there's something generally devious about a goatee, but I agree with you friend that sometimes it helps balance out a man who's completely bald. And I think it helps with their they may not be able to grow hair on their head, but at least they can grow it somewhere!! Otherwise, I find facial hair yucky and dirty...and really uncomfortable if you have to kiss one of those faces!!

And I too will bake you cookies, cakes, pies, tarts, creme brulee...whatever it takes...if you can french braid your leg hair.

Amanda said...

My vote from most to least offensive:
1) Full beards! yuck. I live in the frozen north and can name at least 6 close friends who grew them this winter. I guess climate here seems to lend itself to the mountain man image and somehow works, even for members of the bishopric, but I still hate it. Note to John: If you are growing one next winter, I am vacationing in the Bahamas :)
2) Handlebar mustaches: some think this should be #1, but I know two fantastic guys who could totally pull it off. Fond memories. Shout out to the Lee Brothers!
3)Goatees: I'm not as opposed to these as everyone else and definitely think bald guys can look good with them.
4)No Facial Hair!!!!! Hooray for the razor!
Plus, I'll throw a $30 Border's gift card in the mix for braided leg hair! Now that is tempting, right?

Andrea said...

I still have an unopened box of thin mints. I'll through that in the mix to see the braided leg hair!

Heather said...

Um...I'm still undecided on facial hair. I mean, I have absolutely no desire to kiss a man with a full face of hair, but it does come in handy when there is a particularly unattractive man. Sometimes I'd just rather not see their faces, so all that hair covering it is nice.
But honestly, I think the key is in the grooming of it. If it is maintained and trimed I think they might be ok. (Emphasis on the might.)

Anonymous said...

I'm still laughing at the home of the Ugly and Tragic. They release me weekly when I get myself spruced up and shimmering for church.