Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Beard Watch 2007 Update

Welcome to Day Eighteen of “Beard Watch 2007.” As you can see from the picture above, things on the beard front have progressed greatly. True, the moustache area has yet to fill in as much as Rickey would like, but we’re keeping our fingers crossed for proper upper lip coverage. A scant two weeks ago, the casual passerby might have merely assumed that Rickey had been too lazy to shave, but now their assessment would necessarily have to be “My word, can it be? Yes, I do believe that gentleman is sporting a beard!”

Recently, we’ve come to realize that there is nothing casual about beard-related decisions, and Rickey is all too aware of just how serious a commitment he’s gotten himself into. Indeed, this is no longer an experiment in men’s facial hair fashion. Rickey now acknowledges that a beard is his interface with the world: defining and announcing who he is.

And while numerous people in Rickey’s life have now taken to calling this an “unhealthy obsession,” Rickey begs to differ. We prefer to refer to it as a “healthy fascination.” Rickey has found a new hobby, pogonotrophy, that he enjoys. This hobby not only includes cultivating a beard (growing, grooming, etc.) but also involves developing friendships with other pogonotrophers. So all you pogonotrophers lurking out there should feed free to check in and report on your beard status as well. Rickey currently believes that several categories of Pogonotrophers currently exist (sadly, beard-related statistics are not listed in the U.S. Census).

Rickey currently falls into the classification of “The Average Pogonotropher”: one who grows a beard and enjoys meeting and talking with others about beards. That’s your basic beard enthusiast in a nut shell. And then there also are the following classifications of beard owners:

“The Collector/Academic Pogonotropher.” One who collects bearded images, art work, articles, books, and occasionally participates in Civil War reenactments.

“The Competitive Pogonotropher.” One who competes for ultimate beard supremacy in international beard contests. Think beauty pageant queens with beards.

“The Aesthetic/Zen Pogonotropher.” Similar to “The Average Pogonotropher,” but possessing a greater appreciation for "The Beard". For these folks it's about the process of growing a beard and appreciating each subtle change as it grows longer, or bigger, or wider, or denser, or whatever shape their beard takes. For these select few, growing a beard is akin to gardening or tending a perfect Bonsai tree. For them it is a chosen lifestyle.

Rickey hopes to dabble in all three classes, thereby leading him to complete beard enlightenment. And for all those considering partaking in the glorious exercise of beard growth, we advise you to ignore the naysayers and go full steam ahead. Because really, what would be more interesting to a man than his beard?

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1 comment:

mr. met said...

My beard can officially catch food. I'm two months into the the beard growing myself and I've gone from love to hate back to love. You may be feeling a roller coaster of emotions...you may start confusing yourself as to whether or not you are hippie, but forge on. Your dedication will be rewarded.