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Friday, September 08, 2006

The Beard Hierarchy

What determines the quality and status of a Beard? Is it the length, girth or density? Who is the judge and how does one come to a conclusion? There have been many great beards throughout the course of history, all unique in their own way. I believe there are many ways to reach the levels of greatness in the Beard Caste System. The beauty is that no two beards are the same and an individual is only a small thread in the fabric of facial hair fashion.

Take my brother Chuck for example, he has been recognized in the movie industry for over three decades; Return of the Dragon -1973 (feature film debut). Do you think it is all attributed to his Ass-kicking abilities (which I taught him, of course) or his undeniable good looks (we’re identical twins)? No, it is the collaboration of those and many more physical features. For example, who else could last in Hollywood for thirty-three years and not be admired and known for the raising of the proverbial beard growing bar? With grace and power he has taken the world by storm and now has even managed to enter your house every night via Total Gym infomercials. How ingenious is that? He never ceases to amaze me, and has managed to do all of this without a clean-shaven face.

I may sound a little biased towards Chuck but I love him, he’s my brother. However, enough about Chuck, I want to talk about all of the other famous bearded wonders of the world. We had the great Abe Lincoln, who fashioned the stacheless, Amish beard and Dan Hagerty (aka. Grizzly Adams) the keeper of glorious, golden brown thatch. Great men like Zeus, Jesus Christ, Vincent Van Gogh, Sigmond Freud, Ulysses S. Grant, Frederick Douglass, John Lennon, Jim Morrison, Jerry Garcia, and Uncle Jesse to pretty much any noble man of the Nineteenth Century and before. These men lived a life of passion, accomplishment and a face full of fur. They were not ashamed of how pretty they looked, but how gloriously they wore the features that God had bestowed upon them.

In today’s age of technology and fear of hair, the bearded man is a scarce breed. He is alone and sometimes stared at as if he were part beast. I say bring the beard back, let it soar trough the wind like the majestic eagle and grow as wild as the dandelions on your freshly cut lawn. To be a bearded man in this day and age is something to be admired and celebrated. So I say…”Go Forth…Be Strong…and Grow Long!”

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