Beard Semantics

As a man who’s grown a beard many times in the past (usually in winter), I find this web site devoted to the facially hirsute man both intriguing and amusing.  A few years ago I shaved off my moustache and goatee.  I’d had the moustache for at least 10 years at that point and was almost afraid to see what my upper lip looked beneath the hair.  One woman at my office told me I looked younger, which didn’t surprise me.  I noted that it’s one reason why very young men often grow facial hair – to look more mature.  She’d never realized it.  Thousands, even hundreds of years ago, most men simply couldn’t help but grow beards.  They had no real means to shave.  I think it’s interesting – and somewhat telling of American society – that the last U.S. president with a full beard was Benjamin Harrison who served 1889 – 1893.  The last one with a moustache was William Howard Taft who served 1909 – 1913.  It seems facial hair practically became obsolete in the 1980’s, except for porn stars and gay men.  Full beards were relegated to the dreary environs of mountain men and loggers.  Now, it appears men have the audacity to allow hair to grow on their faces, albeit more kempt and clean than what you think the average mountain man has.  But, it looks like some folks still have an unfavorable view of the bearded man, as the accompanying display insinuates.  That’s okay.  I don’t trust a man who wants to keep his face baby-butt smooth all the time.

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