Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Rickey's Biannual Beard Bloviation

We’ll be the first to confess that other than maintaining a wry sense of humor about our nation’s batshit crazy system of selecting its leaders, Rickey knows (and cares) relatively little about politics. But when the topics of politics and beard growing collide in a wondrous bristly fervor, Rickey feels downright compelled to weigh in on the matter. So come with Rickey as he examines the current state of politics, as seen through the rubric of facial hair exhibition.

How did we get here, you might ask? Well, today’s discussion has been prompted thanks to former presidential candidate Bill Richardson’s recent decision to grow a beard. So if you’re not a big fan of reading weird and discomforting articles about beards on this blog, be sure to write your local senator or congressman about it—they’ll square things away in no time flat. Indeed, for those who missed it, Governor Bill Richardson, apparently unhappy with being cast out of the political arena like a mismatched sock, decided to cultivate a beard in hopes of expressing his deep existential dissatisfaction on the matter.*Pardon the rudimentary arrow & text... Rickey's still struggling to learn the graphical editing powerhouse that is Microsoft Paint.

It’s essentially what we’d refer to as a “protest beard,” a means of signaling that one is feeling wronged, and Rickey takes great umbrage with this troubling development. Make no mistake scruffy readers, this reckless man is ruining things for the rest of us beard flaunting men. With his brazen actions, Bill Richardson is contributing to the cultural misconception that in order for a man to feel compelled to grow a beard, something must have gone seriously awry. Even worse, there’s a growing precedent for this sort of wanton behavior in U.S. politics: in the wake of the 2000 election debacle, Al Gore did something similar by growing a beard to indicate to the world that being unjustly robbed of the presidency didn’t sit very well with him.
Ok, we get it you’re bitter, and Rickey doesn’t fault you for it, but gentlemen please, you’re ruining things for the rest of us wiskered individuals. We have very few rules here at RwR, but one of them is that a beard is not intended to be used as a means of lamenting one’s dashed presidential aspirations. Thanks to the example set by fools like Richardson and Gore, the uninformed bystander will behold a bearded man and assume that there has been a death in the family, a break-up, a stock market crash, or a sudden and inexplicable fixation with model railroading. And that’s all wrong.

See, a beard is intended to be a jubilatory celebration of one’s masculinity: refined yet rugged. In short, beards are not for sulkers. Granted, everyone gets a little down sometimes, and Rickey understands that. Rickey has been known to occasionally suffer from the doldrums himself, which when paired with possessing a beard creates new and unique challenges. One who would previously have simply been experiencing a bad day is now perceived as the “sullen bearded man in the corner” who is to be shunned at all costs. Nonetheless, Rickey plows through these challenges with the zeal and enthusiasm you’d expect from any other proud beard owner. But goddamnit, these hack politicians aren’t making things easy for us, no sir.

Whatever happened to bygone days of American politics when powerful bearded leaders like Lincoln, Grant, Harrison, and Garfield could flaunt their man-beards without fear of societal reprisal? Where are the good old days when a bearded president could affirm his untamed awesomeness by hunting wild boar and vagabonds from a rocking chair situated on the front lawn of the White House? Rickey laments the passing of this golden era and urges you to campaign for its return by visiting this site post haste. For a moment, forget the fact that we'll most likely be inaugurating either our first African American or female president in history--the last time our nation witnessed a bearded president, Jack The Ripper was running around London. And that friends, is a crime of epic proportions (the lack of bearded leadership, not all the Ripper stuff... ...prostitutes are dead on the inside already).

In the meantime, have no fear fuzzy readers: Rickey has no plans whatsoever to abandon his beard at the moment (Rickey totally digs resembling Steven Spielberg circa 1981 on the set of “E.T.” when he wears a baseball cap).

It’s bearded men ahoy over at Humor-Blogs.

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15 comments:

Mark said...

Hear, hear! Finally someone is standing up to the anti-beard establishment.

My bristles salute you!

mr. met said...

I grow a beard every once in a while just to prove I am a man. Nothing more. Nothing less. A beard is simply a barometer of testosterone levels....

Chuck Norris, Matthew Fox’s character on LOST (notice when he goes back to his less-manly life he shaves it off), most of the ’04 Red Sox, Janet Reno….the list of examples can go on and on.

Protest beards are simply unacceptable and stand to only confuse to the situation. Is he brimming full of manliness or is he a whiny protestor? Who knows?

Egan Foote said...

Rickey, please stop recommending that we go to humor-blogs.com. I finally visited and can say for certain that the website's name is one of the worst misnomers I've ever seen. Perhaps the site should be called "self-indulgence-blog" instead.

Egan, out!

Rickey Henderson said...

Mr. Met: Rickey's not sure if you'd call Matt Fox's character on LOST "manly" since all he seems to do is hatch plans that always go to hell and jeopordize everyone, but yes, Rickey catches your meaning.

Egan: Rickey will not relent. The web traffic is simply far too valuable to cast aside. None of this self pimpage would be necessary if you fuckers would get with the program and recommend RwR to your friends. You fools brought this on yourselves.

As humor is highly subjective, Rickey can't really comment on the funny factor over there at HB. Besides, aren't all blogs by their very nature self indulgent? (unless they're created to impersonate a public figure--then they're sublime).

mr. met said...

Fox oozes manhood on LOST. I can see how you would be confused, but since when did the people in charge link 'manhood' to 'well thought out plans'?

The fact remains he thought of those plans in the first place and was a major player for the two hottest non-pregnant chicks on the island. He would have landed them both as well if one did not have a hankering for guys from below the mason-dixon line.

Adrian said...

As a red-blooded, beard-bearing American, I've got to go with Mr. Met here. As far as I can tell, "manliness" and "poorly thought out plans that jeopardize everyone" are basically synonyms.

wowzer said...

Great post - I occasionally grow a beard but even afterwards I keep the mustache and goatee.

btw - if a beard is a barometer of testosterone and manliness, where is Ann Coulter's beard? So many want to know.

MCConfrontation said...

If Ann Coulter wore a beard you wouldn't be able to make fun of her adams apple.

I like to grow the occasional playoff beard, ala a hockey player who embarks on the NHL playoffs and won't shave it until after they hoist the cup or lose out. I don't know why I do it. Inexplicably, I've done it for Yankee playoff runs and felt as if I was going against the tide, against the rule of George Steinbrenner that the only facial hair allowed is a finely groomed stache. But for the NBA, NHL, and the NFL (and sometimes at the very start of the Big East Tournament right on through until my alma mater loses in the NCAA bracket), I'll sport the fuzz.

My 10 month old daughter hates it though. Something about kisses that feel like a brillo pad, I don't know.

Diesel said...

I have a beard because I can't be bothered to shave every day. Also, I like to think that it helps compensate for my weak chin.

Diesel said...

Oh, and Egan: "Self-indulgence blog" is redundant.

Also, you're a jackass.

Alex L said...

I'm just wondering what Hilary will grow when she loses... ohh oh god no, that image isnt going to go away for a while...

I wonder what santas pissed at.

Mike said...

Rickey, thanks for laying the truth on me. I always assumed that your beard was indeed a sign of bitterness & misery: I thought you replaced nicotine with facial hair.

Adrian said...

@ Mike -- not that there's anything wrong with that!

vilking said...

"Whatever happened to bygone days of American politics when powerful bearded leaders like Lincoln, Grant, Harrison, and Garfield could flaunt their man-beards without fear of societal reprisal?"

Powerful leaders like Harrison and Garfield?

Ahem.

Fiar said...

I'm with Both Rickey and Diesel on this. I'm simultaneously too lazy and too manly to shave.