The month is almost over, which means semi-psychotic shoppers who had way too much turkey being incredibly stupid to beat the rest of the half-crazed commerce corps to that greatest deal ever on that one gadget that will be completely unappreciated and probably forgotten by the spring thaw. (No, I’m not cynical at all, what are you talking about?) In happier news, it will also mean a merry end to all the No Shave November hoo hah.
I know most of the rest of the civilized parts of our nation have already forgotten that this was a thing, but we’re more than a little trend-challenged here, so No Shave November hasn’t become last week’s news yet. Young guys are sporting shaggy chins with pride for another week or so, but I have to admit – I don’t get it.
Is manhood really something to celebrate by letting the inertia of life just take over your face? Do we really think it means something that we can grow hair on our faces? (And if so, what does it mean when we can grow hair on our backs?) Is there some kind of statement being made in all of this? I have a suspicion, that culturally, it has something to do with guys trying to assert their manhood without having anyone to help them do so in a meaningful way. If you’re a man and you know you’re a man, would you do something to help a younger guy figure out how he can be one, too? Would you see, in the scratchy young faces of No Shave November, an invitation to mentor boys (even boys who can shave) as they learn the essence of manhood?
Near the beginning of the month, I quipped that guys should put down their moms’ mascara and stop pretending if no one had noticed their participation in the no shave lack of activity yet. Conversely guys, if they still haven’t noticed, either a) you’re kidding yourself about that peach fuzz, or b) you already had the hobo look nailed before the month began. Either way, being a man doesn’t have jack to do with facial hair.
What does it mean to be a man? Comment below with how you’d fill in this blank: “Being a man means ________________.”