October 8, 2005

Facial Hair.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 1:35 pm

Gabby Hayes.jpgI don’t sport facial hair.

In fact, I have never worn a moustache or a beard, except for brief time in the Army a zillion years ago, when I devoted about a week to growing a moustache. After just one week, I realized that: (a) the hair between my upper lip and nose was looking pretty lousy and, quite likely, would never look like a proper moustache, and (b) it was driving me nuts. I always felt like I needed a shave and that my face was never completely clean.

Off that scraggly mess came, and it hasn’t returned since. I know that if I were to try to grow a beard, it would be a repeat performance of my moustache adventure, only worse. My genes seem to be arranged to do all the thick hair stuff on my head, not on my face (or on my chest or back, for that matter). I’m good with that.

Some men wear facial hair all their adult lives, and are happy with it (and, I understand, so are their significant others). I’m good with that too. Hell, it’s their mug to do with whatever they please. However, I do wonder, particularly in the case of longish beards, whether washing one’s face is a big, pain-in-the-ass operation? Does one use a blow dryer? If not, isn’t walking around with wet hair on your face a bitch?

I think it’s fair to say that most men wear beards because they think it is becoming, and, indeed some people look good in beards. Others, however, look as I suspect that I would if I grew a beard – a face bearing a patchy and scraggly mess. Those guys I don’t get.

One of my friends told me he wears a beard because he hates to shave every day. I’m not completely buying that, unless one is talking about the Saddam-Just-Dragged-Out-of-His Rathole look or a ZZ Top type beard, where the wearer just lets it grow wild. In most cases, one has to regularly trim that sucker, which involves not only a razor, but also scissors and a fair amount of time. To me, that sounds like more of a pain in the ass than a daily three-minute zip, zip zip with a Mach III.

The facial hair guys I really don’t get are the ones who work at the perpetual one-day-of- growth look. I believe there are even special razors that are designed to keep these guys looking like homeless people. My advice to them is, “Yo, the next time you shave, stand a little closer to the blade.”

Finally, I believe that facial hair (beards in particular) add five to ten years to the wearer’s appearance. This may be cool in one’s twenties and maybe even in one’s thirties in order to go for the mature, distinguished look. However once one enters the fourth or fifth decade, who needs an additional five or ten years on their mug?

So, I salute my facially hairy friends, but it just ain’t for me.

Bonus points, if you know who the guy in the picture is. No, it’s not Rob.


  1. I believe that’s Gabby Hayes. Or me on vacation.

    Comment by gregor — October 8, 2005 @ 2:21 pm

  2. Gregor wins the kewpie doll. George “Gabby” Hayes it is.

    Comment by Jim - Parkway Rest Stop — October 8, 2005 @ 3:10 pm

  3. I think that Gabby’s beard is better looking than his hat. But not by much.

    Comment by moos — October 8, 2005 @ 4:39 pm

  4. Extra bonus points for the name of his jeep.

    I’m glad to hear you can’t raise a beard. Great farookin’ hair plus a Captain Morgan facial lawn would be too much, don’t you think.

    Comment by Sluggo — October 8, 2005 @ 6:07 pm

  5. Sluggo – Might you be thinking of Pat Brady, Roy Roger’s sidekick, with the jeep named Nellybelle?

    Comment by Jim - Parkway Rest Stop — October 8, 2005 @ 6:21 pm

  6. Does kinda look like Gabby Hayes, don’t it? Bejus!

    Comment by Elisson — October 8, 2005 @ 9:16 pm

  7. Kerr-McGee didn’t allow beards at work— some kinda OSHA regulation about sealing an SCBA face-mask. But I never liked shaving, so when I quit working, I quit shaving, too.

    Gabby Hayes, my ass. I ain’t nearly as pretty as HE is.

    Comment by Acidman — October 8, 2005 @ 9:50 pm

  8. … but still, Acidman, the resemblance is amazing…

    Comment by Eric — October 9, 2005 @ 8:08 am

  9. Your so right Rob. Gabby Hayes looks much better. You just wish you could wear a beard as well. I wear a beard from time to time. Some Women like that womb warmer effect.

    Comment by Willly — October 9, 2005 @ 9:38 am

  10. Pat Brady. I get them confused. I wish I had a sidekick. Never mind.

    Comment by Sluggo — October 9, 2005 @ 10:04 am

  11. i’ve had a beard since sometime in the mid-’70s. I grew it because I didn’t like to shave everyday. It does take some trimming with the clippers and siccors but only once every week (or every other week now that I’ve retired). That’s about the same schedule that I know use when I shave–my head. (Never really liked going to the barbershop.) When the old genes started with the pattern baldness AND widow’s peak I decided what-the-hell and rather than a comb over shaved the top.

    I have occasionally removed the beard “to let my face breath” and scared the hell out of my kids at the same time. I look like Uncle Fester when I do.

    As far as the age thing goes: Yeah, it probably did add to my apparent age back then (the ’70s) but that was okay. As a high school teacher, it didn’t hurt to at least look as old as the parents you were dealing with. Now it has turned mostly white and looks–distinguished. As I near 60 years of age, it doesn’t seem to add any additional years.

    Comment by joated — October 9, 2005 @ 10:56 am


    Jim, he of the Place to Pull Over by the Side of the Road and Pee, wrote a post about Facial Hair – no doubt inspired by that cherubic picture of a mutual friend.

    Trackback by Blog d'Elisson — October 9, 2005 @ 7:58 pm

  13. I believe this may be the first appearance of the neck-beard. The Roman emperor Tacitus, who had a short run in 275-276.

    Comment by Ed Flinn — October 12, 2005 @ 7:30 pm


    Jim of Parkway Rest Stop is musing about the how & why of beard-growing. As a Facial-Hair-Enhanced-American, I can relate. I’ve had my crumb-catcher since about 30-seconds after I was discharged from the Navy, so some people might suspect that…

    Trackback by Bad Example — October 21, 2005 @ 4:02 pm

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