1. The pimple on my forehead.
2. My current bank balance.
3. The irrational pleasure I get from seeing a fridge stocked with beer.
4. The flop sweat I unleash when I get in an argument.
5. My collection of T-shirts w/inappropriate sayings on them (Best/Worst: “This Dick Won’t Suck Itself”)
It's like I'm a cross between a narc and shaggy from scooby doo.
For as long as I can remember, both my brother Mick and my brother-in-law Mike (no joke – Mick and Mike are their actual names) have sported mustaches. The follicle slashes above their lips are so fully integrated with my perception of them that on those rare occasions when Mick and Mike shaved them off their “Mos”, I almost couldn’t recognize them. Their smooth, unfettered faces seemed foreign and vaguely sinister, like they’d each sprouted a clone who happens to be French.
Mick and Mike are part of a tiny legion of men who wear mustaches well, men whose faces seem built to wear them. Their genetic gift rises above such petty concerns as fashion or style. It’s as though they were pre-ordained to wear a mustache, and wearing one imparts to them a masculine credibility that’s denied to lesser, clean-shaven brethren. When I look at their faces, I instantly think of warmth, character, and supreme manly competence. I think this despite the facts that Mick once took his car to a mechanic claiming “it’s broken”, and Mike is an amateur tinkerer whose well-meaning but hare-brained “projects” around the home regularly endanger the lives of my sister and their children.
So naturally, you can see how the idea of a mustache might appeal to me. Here, I’ve been taking the year to be a Better Man, yet it’s looking highly likely that I will fail to achieve most of my self-improvement goals. I need a quick fix, a shortcut that will downgrade my failure from “abjectly humiliating” to “mildly disappointing”, and a mustache could be the answer. Michael Chabon wrote in the excellent book Manhood for Amateurs that an essential part of being a man is to “flood everyone around you in a great radiant arc of bullshit, one whose source and object of greatest intensity is yourself.” My brothers possess a manly bearing that it is in no way justified by their actual manly skills, all thanks to a four-inch stretch of hair on their face. If it works for them, then perhaps it could work for me. I’m almost mad I didn’t think of this sooner – I could’ve grown a Mo in January, declared the Better Man project a success and taken the next 11 months off.
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