War On Unnecessary Facial Hair
Our country is falling into decline. The shit is starting to overflow the sewers and all around us, hipsters and others are growing beards, mustaches and goatees that are entirely unnecessary and, in some cases, very irritating. Walk into any indie coffee shop or dive bar and you’ll see them lined up at the bar or huddled in the corner, eschewing the pool table for a book or a laptop or a news weekly.
My objection to some guy wearing a locally-screenprinted t-shirt, hesher jeans that show entirely too much of his junk, horn-rimmed glasses that he doesn’t actually have a prescription for and a vintage blazer with patches on the elbows has little to do with his far too thought-out wardrobe and more to do with his waxed handlebar mustache.
The same goes for the mid-20′s schlub in the corner wearing a Led Zepplin tour shirt from 1974 under his carefully selected hoodie and sporting a big, bushy beard. You sir, need a razor.
Ditto the guy bellied up to the bar sporting gigantic, bushy sideburns that nearly tickle his nose. Underneath that skullcap is probably a shaved head, for no good reason other than the shaved look accentuates the sideburns.
The facial hair in these cases aren’t the kind of statements that they used to be. It used to be that men grew beards because they looked better with a beard, or because their face was cold. Now, they’re ironic statements, styles plucked from yesteryear by virtue of their quaintness. This is facial hair grown and groomed out of boredom. Pampered out of ironic pride. Specially tailored to piss me off.
Or, at least, it seems that way.
If there was a good reason for someone my age to grow a handlebar mustache- say a career spent kidnapping damsels and putting them in distress by tying them to train tracks or plotting to ruin some shining exemplar of society, then I’d understand. If that beard was grown to imitate Paul Bunyan or because the wearer is a desperate loner, that’d be fine. If those sideburns were accompanied by an epic afro, a la Sly Stone, more power to him. But, those jobs have long since gone by the wayside. Thankfully, it hasn’t become ironic to tie women to railroad tracks. Yet…
My acidic reaction to this irritating new trend has nothing to do with my virtual inability to grow uniform facial hair. I assure you. This isn’t sour grapes on my part. Even if I could grow a bushy beard, I wouldn’t. Why should I? It doesn’t look good. If I happened to be one of those men who benefited from a beard, I’d be bitter, but I’m not. I wouldn’t even think of growing a mustache, because blonde guys who have mustaches are pedophiles, period. As for the sideburns, I can grow them, but since I can’t grow the requisite afro, I abstain.
Of course, the reason that I run into these people and their unnecessary facial hair might have something to do with the fact that I live in the unnecessary facial hair capital of America, Portland. We have more hipsters per capita than most states. One of our local magazines, Portland Monthy, even had a recent story all about Portlanders and their annoying beards. Here’s an quote from one of the “beardos;”
“A beard is a bullshit filter. It keeps me from working at lame places and
interacting with lame people.
“A beard is a reminder that I am wild, that my roots are from the wilderness.
Hey, buddy, that beard may keep bullshit off of you, but you’re getting it all over me and everyone else when you say silly shit like that.
This has to stop.
So, I’m declaring a War on Unnecessary Facial Hair. Be it a mustache, a beard, sideburns, or even a cringe-worthy soul-patch, they have to be curtailed. There can be no letting up, no surrender, no matter how bushy, no matter how hirsute, we must prevail. I will be issuing everyone an industrial-strength beard-trimmer/electric razor, along with a holster to carry it in. Remember, you are not alone. Together, we can defeat this menace!