Monday, October 25, 2010

Great Beards of Walmart

Walmart can be a great place to get your feet wet in the increasingly popular sport of competitive beard-watching:

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Upcoming Beard Events

Beard Team USA has posted this Fall's events:

Austin Facial Hair Club benefit show
October 18th, 2010
Beauty Bar, 617 E. 7th St. – Austin, Texas 78701
Proceeds will help Austin Facial Hair Club get to Norway and represent Austin!

Third Annual Western Pennsylvania Beard and Moustache Competition
Billy’s Bar and Grill
Oil City, Pennsylvania
October 23, 2010
6 pm

Aarne Bielefeldt
2010 National Champion
Full Beard Division

Austin Facial Hair Club’s Halloween River Boat Party
October 29th, 2010
Austin, TX
All aboard @ 9 pm

Ohio’s First Beard and Moustache Competition and Festival
Polen Farm
Dayton, Ohio
November 13, 2010
A charity event supporting a local home called the Stillwater Center.
If you want to compete, just show up. Info:

Krewe de Croix Beard and Moustache Contest
Christiansted, US Virgin Islands
February 5, 2011
Krewe de Croix, the Virgin Islands’ local chapter of Beard Team USA, presents the annual beard and moustache contest. This time the theme is “Rock and Roll is here to stay!”

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Beard Salute: The Roaming Gnome

"Hello, chaps! Welcome to my spiffy new digs. Can I put the kettle on for you? I’m the Travelocity Roaming Gnome. You’ve probably seen me on the telly, actually, upholding the Travelocity Guarantee. You should know that the camera adds ten pounds. Things I like include finding smashing travel deals, buttered crumpets, combing my lustrous beard, and Photoshopping my passport picture so I look just a smidge taller. Things I don’t like include tan lines, the last day of vacation, people who scream “freebird!”, and getting stuck in the middle seat between two Chatty Cathys."

The Roaming Gnome--whose real name remains undisclosed for obvious reasons--escaped oppressive gardening back in 2003, assisted by the Garden Gnome Liberation Front (a little known subset of the Facial Follicle Freedom Front). After spending several months reconnecting with family at the Bavarian Black Forest refugee camp, he finally found employment with Travelocity's marketing group in 2004, where he's happily served ever since.

When asked to comment on gnomish beard cultivation, he only said,

"Bullhonkery! We gnomes are born with lustrous beards. Anyway, you wouldn't happen to have a bit of stinky cheese about, would you, eh?"
In any case, this beard salute goes out to the Roaming Gnome. Sir, we salute you!

Travelocity, Tourguide from Baldwin& on Vimeo.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Cranium to Face: a Tenuous Transition

Head hair and face fur are two different animals, and the experienced barber does not take the tenuous transition lightly. Although the occasional chap revels in marked cranial/facial distinction, most of us prefer that some attempt at blending is made.

But how?

One method I've tried:
Make all hairs stand up perpendicular to the skin, starting from the the place where your sideburn transitions to cheek-line (the Elvis hook) and going up to about where the side of your head transitions to dome. Having stood these hairs up, you can (theoretically) look into a mirror head on, see the incongruence in length between the sideburn hairs and side-of-your-head hairs, and use a buzzer to create a gradient from the top of your sideburn to the top of the side of your head.

Suffice it to say that this technique will work when cycling naked is an acceptable alternative to air conditioning.

No, the simplest way to accomplish the blend is this:
Wet your hair and comb all your sideburn and side-of-head hair straight forward, like you're trying to comb it into your eye. You'll notice a leap in length as sideburn hair meets side-of-head hair. Simply create a smooth arc in hair length, from sideburn to bangs.
Now, reverse the process-- comb all hair backward at the same angle, like you're trying to comb it back into your ear. If you can trim around the front of your ear in a seamless arc from sideburn to head hair, while your hair is firmly in this position, you will have come close to blending beard and skull sufficiently.

Alternately, you could just grow both so long that transition becomes a non-issue.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Manterview: Brandon Dyer

SC: Brandon, thanks for being with us today.

BD: Thanks for having me, Scott.

SC: Brandon, many of our readers know that you recently converted to Presbyterianism. I'd like to explore the relationship between Reformed theology and beards. What role did your facial manliness play in this? Is there anything you'd like to say to your clean shaven Reformed brethren? Talk to us.

BD: Great question. Let me answer with an encounter I had last night (October 3, 2010):

I needed to take the trip to Hanover Park, Illinois, to be presented before the session for membership in the Presbyterian church. As I sat at the round table with them, I began to notice something. I looked to my left, and there sat an elder with a full beard. I looked across the table at the preaching pastor and noticed his beard filling in quite nicely. I looked at yet another elder and noticed his burns and chin goatee filling in. I began to be distracted by this phenomenon as I qualified my supralapsarian position to them. As I thought about it later, I began to realize why I was so distracted. The distraction happened at the moment I realized the strong link that Reformed theology has with beards.

As I left that room I felt confident in my imminent acceptance into membership. Was it because I could wax eloquently (Robert Reymond style) about supralapsarianism? No. Was it because one of the elders said my girlfriend seemed like she would be a "suitable helpmeet"? No. It was because I decided over a month ago to have a full man's beard for the meeting I would be having with the session. This decision-- to grow, groom, and keep my beard--proved to be monumental in my acceptance into the Presbyterian church.

I would certainly implore my brethren in other Reformed camps to consider the beard. Not only does it provide security in your manhood, but it allows others to feel secure in you. Growing a beard isn't only about yourself, it's about others--your congregation, your significant other, your children. How long will you wallow in your nakedness? Clothe your face, brothers.

SC: Some have said that Reymond's modified supra position is essentially infra. It's like infra that doesn't want to be. I mention this because it finds parallel with that elder who wore only burns and a chin goat-- like a beard that doesn't want to be.
Leaving aside the question of God's decree, do you agree with my sentiments toward goatees and their ilk? Or do you consider them legitimate expressions of masculinity in their own right?

BD: I do agree. However, this man obviously lacks BGP (Beard Growing Potential). So, in compassion, I think it necessary to give him an "A for effort". In most cases, I wouldn't consider them a legitimate expression of masculinity, but in his case I'm thankful for his attempt.

SC: Of course. Of course. As I always say, "grow what you've got." One's manliness does not consist in his growth potential, but in his use of whatever growth potential he has.
Moving on, Brandon, I'm sure that our readers would like to know how your beard has treated you. What's it done for winter warmth? Relational warmth? What else?

BD: Some "men" buy scarves to cover their face. I say, "Why not let your God-given hair cover your face?!" Is there any synthetic material that can keep you warmer than your own hair? Did God really intend for anything but facial hair to cover your face?

Relationally, I can't say my beard has been well received by the women in my life: sisters, mother, girlfriend, etc. My suspicion when it comes to women's lack of love for the beard, is that they lack the biblical undergirding concerning beards. This epidemic is sweeping through our churches.



SC: Hm. I feel for you Brandon, and respect your perseverance. Bear in mind that your woman does not yet know what benefits your beard will bring to marriage. After tying the knot, she'll have ample reason to rejoice in her hubby's face fur.
I'd like to wrap this up by asking you to address those readers who are teetering on the fence of indecision. Some fear that their growth will be sparse. Others that employers will not approve. For some others, the fear of the unknown, of silliness, of failure, inhibits their manliness. Reach your arm through their monitor, right now, put it a
round them, and speak a word of encouragement.

BD: Brothers, I want you to understand something. This interview is explicitly toward brothers. This is not a sexist issue! But it is a man-only issue. Only men (well...mainly men) can make the decision to let their beards grow freely or to put the blade to the face. Gentlemen, is pseudofolliculitis really worth it to you? Is spending money on blades, shaving cream, and talc powder really being a good steward of your money?
Consider beard growth--for yourself, for your church, for you family.

SC: A good word, Brandon; a good word. Thanks for giving us a few minutes of your time! Stay bearded, my friend.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010


The intentions are usually the best. A beard is slightly overgrown, a quick touch up will make it look better. That's the motivation. But other considerations enter into the equation. A steamed up mirror. An over zealous gesture of the wrist. A dull razor blade.

But undoubtedly the most precarious factor is the human eye. A hypothetical situation:

A man enters into the bathroom intending on trimming his full beard. The hair has grown too high onto his cheeks, and it looks unkempt and half-cocked. The tool of choice: a three-bladed Gillette razor. The initial debate: does he start high and work low, or start low and go up?

The shaving cream is applied, and whether he starts high or low, the same thing seems to happen: after shaving and washing the cream away, one side is a little askew compared to the other. More shaving cream is needed... and then the follicular formation is lopsided in the other direction. Repeat. Same problem.

Before the victim knows it, their beard is all but gone. Very little reason to keep the goofy-looking stray loners poking out all over the face. And so, the fateful, heavy decision is made: the facial hair must go altogether. The departure takes place with the hope that a new dawn will see the beginnings of stubble. With each subsequent dawn, hope will swell. The newly shorn man comforts himself with that knowledge, that God has worked into his DNA the automatic capability for hairy growth.

Until the beard returns... don't overdo it.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

When Hollywood Outdoes the Church

What do Aragorn, Wallace, Spiderman, and Brad Pitt (who's played no part I feel like honoring in any sense) have in common?

They have the good sense to wear appreciable beards in real life.

Well, to the degree they...have...a real life.

This is an Imago Dei thing, obviously.

Thick in front and sparse on the sides, but a man is never to be judged on biological factors. The degree of freedom one grants what follicles he has is the test of his masculinity (besides, mine grows the same way!) Full mustache development, accentuated by slicked hair.
Score: 7

Lumberjack with nicely patterned white streak under the lower lip.
Score: 9

Boxy. Compliments the babyface in a way that communicates youthful, masculine vitality. Rookie lumberjack with lots of potential.
Score: 8

" is not to take his patterns from nature; but neither is he to waste himself in seeking to change her face."
--Richard Weaver
Although some struggle with the latter indictment, Brad Pitt struggles with the former.
Score: 5

So why do I--he who does not own a TV and no longer watches movies--give these beards a mention? To shame the Church into reform.

Brethren, we are outdone by the world. These things ought not to be.

Monday, October 4, 2010

The Beard in King Arthur's Court

"Consequently, when the Pevensie children had returned to Narnia last time for their second visit, it was (for the Narnians) as if King Arthur came back to Britain, as some people say he will. And I say the sooner the better."

--C.S. Lewis

Well, Jack, looks like you got your wish:

(click pic)

This dude believes he's King Arthur. And he wants to represent Salisbury in Westminster.

Um... FAIL.

When King Arthur rides in, he won't be wearing a suit OR a pink scarf, and he won't be asking for votes and he won't be representing Salisbury. He'll be sitting his behind in Buckingham palace.

So, why does he deserve a mention on our blog?

Dude, nice beard.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Beard Salute: Doug Wilson

Since the publication of his most recent book, Goateed Is Not Enough, Doug has received alot of attention from the bearded community. And with good cause. Doug wears appreciable facial fur, and he wears it well.

Some have questioned his orthodoxy (as is repped by the above pic), but even this photoslopper could not erase the beard. Need we say more?

Doug Wilson, we salute you!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Delilah 2.0

"Submit a friend or loved one with facial hair abuse issues for a personal hydrovention today! If your case is selected Doc Hydro's team of nurses will set up a surprise appointment at the patient's home, office, or favorite hang out. Your personal hydrovention will be filmed and aired on our website, facebook, and youtube page. The patient will be cleaned up and hydrated just in time to send yourself, the patient and two friends on a SPRING BREAK TRIP."

Want to undermine the legitimacy of corporal punishment? Refer to it as "hitting your kids."

Want to undermine the conservation of marriage? Refer to it as "hate speech."

Want to undermine the manliness of beardedness? Refer to it as "facial hair abuse issues."

Oh the damnable subtlety with which phrases are turned!

This beast--Weaver's "Great Stereopticon" (that's "mass media" for the rest of us)--would turn roommate against roommate, wife against husband, and man against follicle.
Have we forgotten how to blush? Would we expose said blush bare-cheeked? For shame.

To that supposed example of "facial hair abuse" in the upper right-hand corner, I say,
"Sir, do not be taken in: Delilah 2.0 stands below you, casting her pseudo-seductive gaze; but, she is a pawn of Schick, and does not want you, but your demise."