A New Look

Me in college, with my very first beard.

Every now and then I grow a beard.

The comments usually begin about three days into the process.

Numerous people look at me and make this statement: “You’re growing a beard.”

Yep, my days are spent endlessly answering people who have stated the obvious.

It gets tedious. So I’ve come up with something to say other than, “Yes, you’re right. I AM growing a beard.”

One response reveals my interest in being precise: Actually, I’m always growing a beard. I’ve just stopped shaving it.

My favorite response is one I borrowed from the actor Martin Mull: No, I still shave every day. I just think the blade’s gotten dull.

(By the way, regular trimming is the first responsibility of every beard owner. The Wahl Trimmer I’m always telling you about is ideal.)

I’ve never been brave enough to shave my head. Ray, a friend of mine, told me that every man has to shave his head once. For some men, it’s a good look. For others, it isn’t. But you never know whether it’s a good idea for you until you’ve done it.

I’ll always remember the moment Ray told me that. It was a Monday morning. I’d just walked into his office and was shocked to see he’d shaved his head over the weekend.

I was determined to act like nothing was out of the ordinary. That lasted about five seconds, then I burst into uncontrollable laughter.

Ray is a handsome guy, but the shaved head look was not for him. Poor Ray. He heard a lot of laughter over the following few days. I give him a lot of credit. He could have just taken vacation days and disappeared for the rest of the week, but he was brave and returned to the office every morning. Ray ended up letting his hair grow and grow and grow. It got REALLY long. He didn’t cut it for ages.

Let’s have some fun here. Tell me the comments you’ve received – positive and negative – when you’ve changed your look. Feel free to add your responses.

One more thing: If you see me and I happen to be growing a beard, I hope you’ll say hello and tell me what you’ve been up to. But please don’t say, “You’re growing a beard.” I knew that long before you did.

  • Nancy

    August 23rd, 2010


    Love the Martin Mull quote! I have always liked your beard. I think you should use the dull blades again.

    I remember a very bad perm I had gotten. I knew it was bad as did everyone else. No one ever said a word. The next time I had my hair done all my friends said how much the liked my new style and really disliked the old one. Just goes to show you…. if you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all!

    Great blog. Thank you.

  • William

    August 23rd, 2010


    A good policy.

  • Patty

    August 23rd, 2010


    My husband does shave his head! The first time he shaved all his hair he looked like Sargeant Carter from the old Gomer Pyle series… I took one look at him and said, Gollllllllllllllllyyyyyyyyyyy! It took a while to get used to but now I love it! My husband uses the Wahl Trimmer I bought him last Christmas!

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