Hirsute Yourself 13: The right to beard alms.

Bye bye beardy, I’m gonna miss you so. For the past three and a half months I’ve been cultivating a lush (read: scraggly and unkempt) head of hair on my chin and cheeks. I use the word “cultivating” loosely, ’cause that sounds like effort was involved. It was more a lack of effort. There was no conscious action that went into this face fuzz. It happened through a combination of time and neglect. I wasn’t aiming for any goals, I simply didn’t bother shaving for a while.

It’s been weird having a beard. Not that I’ve been particularly bothered, but people feel super entitled to just come up and manhandle your chin. As if they’re patting a puppy or something. I guess others flat out assume that you’re used to it and grab a handful. Who do they think they are, former NZ Prime Minister John Key? There’s this pre-existing connotation that if you don’t look like you skin people professionally, then you must be a jolly bloke if you own a beard. Some kind of Boisterous Bruiser type, most likely.

Tonight though, it’s getting the chop. Mother Earth got the hint and finally showed Toronto a crack of light. It’s gonna be the sweaty season soon and there’s no fucking way I’m dealing with a chin carpet in the sun. I’m going to a wedding in a few weeks, so it makes no sense to hold on to it. Also to be honest, I’m sorta tired of accidental water reservoirs dribbling down and staining my shirts. It looks silly (because of the aforementioned lack of styling) and doesn’t really suit my face. On one hand it instantly makes me “that guy” at a social event, but on the other, it means that people are super keen to talk about my beard, something of which I have little to no opinion.

My one regret about dropping the beard is missed costume opportunities. I mean, tonight the costume I’m doing looks better without a beard, which is contributing more than a little to the shearing. Come Halloween though? I’ve always wanted to do a good Wolverine costume and Logan has made the whole look a shit ton easier. It wouldn’t be a stretch to look haggard and decrepit for a change. Much like the beard, it’d be as easy as putting in no effort.

I will miss a thing or two about it. Last night I discovered that if a pen is small enough I can hold it in my beard Pebbles style. It’s a great thinking aid when I’m pondering the mysteries of the universe (when am I not?). Most of all it’s nice to know that I can grow a beard if I want to. Not that I often will, but at least it’s an option.

If only I could donate it to someone in need. Like people shaving their long locks and giving them to cancer sufferers. To use my powers for good. Clearly I’m no hero.


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