Thursday, April 06, 2006

Did Grizzly Adams ever get any play?

Guys will compete with each other over anything. This quirk of the male character never ceases to amaze me or crack me up.

The scene: Boston, April 2001. The place: Applebee's. I was out to lunch with four of my male coworkers. Two of them - we'll call them Ted and Bob - were getting a little, shall we say, "scruffy". I don't mean growing-out-a-beard scruffy; I'm talking about unkempt-mountain-man-who-hasn't-seen-a-woman-in-about-a-decade scruffy. Untrimmed, ungroomed, unclean. Bob's beard was starting to resemble a collection of little dreds. On a skinny white dude, this is not a good look. Now, it's not unusual for guys who live in cold climates to grow a beard in the wintertime, but it was spring; the weather was getting warmer by the day, as the hair growing out of Tim and Bob's faces got more and more grizzly.

"Aren't you guys hot under all that hair?" I had to ask. "What gives with the cave dweller look?"

Ted and Bob looked at each other and shared the conspiratorial "huh-huh, huhuhuh" laugh that guys have when they're doing something just to see what happens.

"We've decided to see how long we can grow our beards before they drive us crazy and we have to chop them off," said Ted. "We're trying to see who can go longest before shaving." Bob nodded his head in assent.

"Oh, I get it," I said amiably. "You're competing to see who can go the longest without getting laid."

Silence from all four guys. Then: uproarious laughter all around. "Uh, dude," said Bob, "we might want to rethink this."


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Blogger Linnaeus said...

Ginger, you once again display your piercing vision for the underlying truth.

Speaking of competition amongst we males, you might appreciate this anecdote:

A friend of mine who used to be in the same grad program as mine was noted for, shall we say, his love of drink. This he told us, was a result of his upbringing in Huntsville, Alabama, and we didn't argue that point.

Anyway, Ryan had a pitcher of beer with him and another acquaintance of ours, Zane, saw him and sat down with him. Zane got the idea that he would drink Ryan under the table and proceeded to attempt to down an entire pitcher, as Ryan appeared to be doing.

Needless to say, Zane was having a difficult time of it once he'd finished the pitcher and tried for another. Ryan drank leisurely, not paying much attention to what Zane was doing.

Zane was just getting near passing out when Ryan said to him, "Zane, let me give you some advice. It's not a competition. It's a lifestyle."

8:53 PM  
Blogger Scott Lemieux said...

"Oh, I get it," I said amiably. "You're competing to see who can go the longest without getting laid."


Actually, my co-bloggers have harassed me about growing facial hair (at a non-Grizzly level, of course), but, I dunno.

10:26 AM  
Blogger Ginger said...

LOL Linnaeus, that anecdote is definitely blogworthy.

Scott, I think facial hair at the non-grizzly level is ok if it suits the guy and is kept neat. It's your face, after all!

9:43 AM  
Blogger Linnaeus said...

Glad you liked it, Ginger.

As for my own facial hair experience, I don't usually go beyond "grad student face", e.g., I got up later than I wanted to and couldn't shave that morning. Back in the '90s, I affected a goatee for a couple of years because that seemed the cool and fashionable thing to do. It made me look older, however, and while I didn't mind that when I was in my early to mid-20s, I wanted to look a little younger as I got older. So, no beards for me since then.

Plus, I've noticed that women seem to like me better without facial hair. This is A Very Good Thing.

1:24 PM  
Anonymous Tibialmusician said...

what makes me happiest about this is the sense of humour they both showed. Glad to hear you have great coworkers much like mine *grins*

My stance on the facial hair thing is a little scruff can be nice and often the goatee can be very sexy but there is a limit after all. The whole "too much of a good thing" idea.

I came in late so I'm catching up on the fun I missed.

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