The appearance and disappearance of a beard


Every Christmas I have my annual attempt to decide how much I’ve progressed on the road to being a man. That’s right, I see how much beard I can grow. By the time he was in his early 40’s, my dad could manage a full Gerry Adams (and my dad looked just like him too, same hair, same glasses, same actors voice on the telly). I’m a shade under 36 now and still travelling down that road. This year however was the most encouraging yet.

What I tend to do is grow 2-3 weeks of face hair and then prune it into something like a goatee. This years didn’t elicit the usual howls of derision from Wifey and I took that as a good sign. I shaved the unkempt mass down to a goatee while the bath water was running for the nippers. Once I’d plonked the boy in his bath, I asked his opinion. He looked at me, reached out and prodded it and said, “But it’s a bit silly.” Crushed, I left it on for the rest of the evening and then shaved it off prior to going back to work.

There’s always next year I suppose.