I don’t shave for Sherlock Holmes. Or anyone else.

“Are you going to shave for the wedding?”

This is something I’ve been asked quite a lot recently. Sometimes repeatedly by the same person, which is a little annoying. One of my friends is not a fan of the face fuzz and clearly feels that I would look better clean shaven on the big day. This is fine, but as I’ve stated that my opinion opposes this the matter should be laid to rest now, right?

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Me in the classic “look at my ring” pose

This is the first time I’ve really grown a beard properly. Prior to this I just used to occasionally let it grow for a while because I was too lazy to shave regularly. I am terrible at shaving, and would emerge smooth faced and bleeding like a character in an ’80s slasher movie.

As a student nurse I had to keep myself tidy while on placement, mainly because of the constant whining of my mentor. However, since I decided nursing wasn’t for me, I’ve not shaved in about a year and a half.

I’m not sure I should share that as it highlights just how patchy and crap my facial hair growth is. Seriously, look at the above photo. There’s enough hair there for me to rock a decent moustache and chin beard, but it’s all spread out across my face, meaning that my beard isn’t the best. I wish it was like one of those old magnet and iron filings things where I could just move the hairs around my face until I had a decent full beard.

I’d love to boast a full on Grizzly Adams beard, but alas, my hair grows in a stupid pattern. At least it now looks like an intentional beard, for a while it just looked like laziness.

405x-1

Brian Blessed- Beard goals.

This is a downside of having a beard at the moment. I get the sense that people see it as me following the current trend for hirsute men. This isn’t true, it’s just a coincidence that beards are “in” while I’ve grown mine.

The reasons for my beard? Simple really;

  1. My hatred of shaving
  2. Laziness. It’s one less thing to do during my early morning zombie state.
  3. MWF likes the hairy look, so making her happy is an additional perk.
  4. The last time I did shave, for a job interview, I looked really young. And stupid. So, I’ll stick with mature and stupid for the foreseeable future.

I’ll give the beard a trim before the wedding, so that I look a little smarter than normal, but I don’t think shaving it off would do much.

Besides, it doesn’t matter how tidy I look at the start of the day, sooner or later I’ll spill food or drink down myself and shatter the illusion of being a smartly dressed grown up.

Any thoughts? You know what to do. BETEO.


Crew cuts for all

As we sat watching Ghost Rider the other night MWF was on Facebook when she exclaimed “You’re gonna flip!”
She then preceded to show me a story, or rather comments on a story that had annoyed her and she guessed would push my buttons. She knows me so well.
The story was about a 13 year old girl who was sent home from school because her hair didn’t fit school rules on uniform (here). The girl had got leopard print dye on her hair and on her first day she was sent home.
image

Now, first of all I don’t think your school has any right to tell you to wear your hair. As a teenager I has long, scruffy hair and I think had my school told me to cut it I think I would have told them “hell no”. Bad enough they made me wear a tie every day and an itchy jumper, but that was their call. My hair? That’s mine and I have that all the time, outside of school as well, so frankly the school has no right to dictate how I wore it.
MWF agrees, being someone who dyes her hair regularly and believing in the basic principles of choice, individuality and self-expression. The school has over stepped and let’s face it can a haircut really stop you (or others) from working and succeeding?
What MWF knew would really work me up were majority ents from various Facebook users.
Good grief.
What an outpouring of vile, narrow minded drivel that was.
The vast majority seemed to think that the school was right and didn’t hold back from attacking the girl or her mother. Yes, they went in hard on a 13 year old girl, insulting her, calling her ugly and even trotting a bit of homophobia for good measure. Classy folks.
Here’s a selection:
image

A quick response to these two. First commenter, is it really the responsibility of a kid to be an example to other kids? Shouldn’t parents be setting the example, in which case I hope you don’t have kids as you’re teaching them to blindly follow pointless rules and that it’s okay to insult a random stranger based on looks. Stay classy.
Commenter two, wow what a an inspiring story, but I put it to you that just because you were a spineless little wimp who cracked at the first sign of disapproval doesn’t mean everyone is.
It seemed that a school stripping their students of any individuality was fine by them. Perhaps they fancy a system in the style of North Korea where there’s an approved list of hairstyles and you have to pick from that list.
Or maybe that’s still too much freedom of choice and room to be different, let’s just shave everybody’s heads.
What these people failed to grasp that the school was punishing a student for being different, for trying something out. She’s thirteen for crying out loud! Let her try out a different look, what harm does it do anyone else?
I feel the school was heavy handed and in the wrong and I firmly believe that no organisation should be able to dictate how you choose to look. It’s an infringement of personal freedom and the ability to be yourself, and I can’t help feel that most of the people posting comments would kick up if their boss announced that it was skinheads all around one Monday morning. Unless they’re in the military, in which case they’ve already surrendered quite a bit of their individuality.
Even at a basic level the lack of sympathy shown for a young girl who was clearly upset by events was grim reading. What is it about keyboards or screens that makes some folks turn into callous, mean spirited little twerps?
Rant over, I’ll let you get back to whatever you’re up to and may your hair grow free, in the style you want. Unless you’re rocking a man-bun in which case, cut it off, you’re only gonna regret the photos in a few years time.
Any thoughts? You know what to do. BETEO.


News Grab Bag March 2014: Hair brains and other stories

Hairy moment 1- If everybody looked the same…

A few weeks back I got my haircut, mainly because I was tired of being told I needed to and that I looked scruffy. I got the longest razor cut you can have, an 8, and was pleasantly surprised with the fact I didn’t look completely terrible. I haven’t had my hair short since the mid 90s really, and so it took a few days to get used to it, and I still find myself using my nervous tic of brushing hair behind my ears, even if there’s no hair to brush back. Whatever, after this I saw two hair related stories, and here’s the first.

Apparently, North Korea has recently made a guideline that male university students should adopt the same hairstyle as their leader Kim Jong-un. This is a massive crackdown on personal expression, as previously North Koreans had to choose from pre-approved styles (18 for women, 10 for men, and one hopes the mullet was one of the tolerated ten).

Now, this is pretty bad, but it’s made even worse by the fact that the leader’s haircut is awful:

Kim Jong-un, because he's worth it

Kim Jong-un, because he’s worth it

 

Seriously, even by political figure standards, that’s a bad look. I’d hate to live under this regime, I hate just having to cut my hair short, being told what style to have it done in would drive me nuts, and is further testimony to the terrifying, totalitarian way of life the North Koreans have to live in. Details.

(Update, apparently this is all bollocks, apart from the fact there is a list of 28 approved cuts. Which is still pretty mental when you think about it, but at least they don’t have to get the daft Jong-un look)

Not so flash

Flashing is a weird phenomenon, and entirely dependent on who’s doing it.

A girl flashing her breasts is usually well received by the audience and mooning is regarded as fairly harmless from both genders. But a dude whipping out his old boy is a very different proposition. There’s just something more aggressive and invasive about a dude exposing himself to some innocent passer by.

I watched a documentary a few years ago and apparently it’s a sexual thing for a lot of flashers, and I think that’s what makes it creepy as hell. It’s forcing someone to see something they don’t want to, and you don’t know what kind of life that person’s had, it might be a distressing and upsetting experience for them.

So, fair play to a teenager from Manchester who got her flasher nicked. Jodie Schofield, 16, was walking along when a guy jumped out and flashed her. Incensed by his actions and the fact he laughed at her, Jodie gave chase and after 30 minutes managed to enlist the help of two workmen who grabbed the perv and held him until the cops turned up to arrest him.

Schofield

Schofield

Well done to Miss Schofield for chasing him down and not letting him get away with it and making sure he gets punished for it. Story.

Be careful out there

Here in the UK, NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, shouldn’t it be nihce? Or turn the C and H and at least “niche”?) have stated that under 25s, even those beneath the age of consent should have better access to birth control.

Personally, I think this is a good idea, some teenagers are having sex early, and they need to be doing it safely. The argument that this is going to encourage kids to have sex is daft, because they’re clearly already having it, and remembering my own teenage years when condoms were trickier to get your hands on (although I never actually needed them)  my friends and I were ready to go anyway.

Sex education and allowing kids to have condoms and birth control is going to be a massive help. Too many kids are risking their futures and health with unprotected sex, and lack of knowledge, even in the information age, is still rife. Kids know about sex, but they need to know that help is available, and how to have it in the safest possible way.

Allowing school nurses to give the morning after pill, one of the proposed changes, is a great idea. Students can slip there under the guise of something else, thus avoiding gossip or embarrassment, and clear it out. I can’t help that many of those who object to this kind of measure are the very same people who would heap scorn and judgement upon that girl were she to have a child. Either way these people complain, but this way, those teenagers will be supported throughout and be able to make the choice for their future.

That’s my thoughts on that anyway. Here.

Hairy moment 2- Bad move

It’s the second hair story of the blog, and a display of blindly following rules and extreme dickery.

Over in the States a Colorado schoolgirl, aged 9, shaved her head. Kamryn Renfro made the decision to show support and solidarity for a friend undergoing cancer treatment. Touching, right? I mean, you’d have to be some kind of soulless robot not to have your heart warmed by that.

Kamryn Renfro

Kamryn Renfro

Unfortunately, an early prototype soulless robot was clearly employed at Kamryn’s school, and she was suspended for breaking the school’s rules on clothing and appearance. Yes, you heard that right, some dick actually kicked out a 9 year old for shaving her head to help another kid who’s having cancer treatment.

The decision was quickly overturned, presumably because someone with some sense heard about it and realized that (a) it was a terrible, stupid decision to make and (b) that the school was going to catch a lot of flak for it.

Kamryn returned to school, and they’ve decided to have a review of their rules. This is why you have to use some common sense and decency in enforcing rules, or you’re just being an officially sanctioned dick. More.

Umm, I can’t think of a goofy title for this one

The other day I was scrolling through the Huffington Post home page when I saw a headline that grabbed the attention- “Porn star fired for having sex with black man” or words to that effect. This caught me by surprise because having sex is surely not against the porn code, and a lot of pornstars sleep with black men, or so I’m told, I’ve never seen porn, being a good  boy.

Intrigued, I clicked through and discovered a story in which there are no good guys to root for.

The “porn star” in question was German actress Kitty Blair, and she wasn’t fired as a porn performer for her interracial encounter, no she was fired as a member and public face of National Democratic Party of Germany (NDP). The NDP knew she was a porn star, and happily let her stand around in skimpy clothes to drum up support and win votes.

Kitty Blair

Kitty Blair

But it turns out the NDP are actually a far-right bunch of ne0-Nazis. Which explains why they wouldn’t be happy that Blair was having sex with a black dude.

A member of the party stated “Those who sell their body for money and disgrace their race have no place in our party”, which is a statement so hateful I feel like I should have a shower or something, having been tainted just reading it. Seriously, let’s all go have a shower to wash this stench of bigotry off us….

That’s better.

The NDP aren’t even trying to hide their racism, I mean, they were fine with her shagging for cash, and publicizing them, but as soon as she shags a black dude, she has to go? Miss Blair as well is pretty odious by all accounts, a porn star is fine, but backing up these hate fueled bunch of dicks is terrible.

It probably doesn’t need to be said, but I hate Nazis, whether old or new, and finding out the full story left me fuming even more than the misleading headline had prepared me for. I thought there’d be more to the story, and there was, several more levels of scummery.

Hell, I even feel kinda disgusted with her co-star for being willing to shag someone with such loathsome views. I mean, dude, have some self respect!

Like I said, there are no heroes here.

Any thoughts? You know what to do. BETEO.


Hairbrained

 

Big round of applause to the staff of St Leonards Academy for really staking a claim for “douches of the year 2013”.

Seriously, aside from Mrs Trunchbull, I can’t remember hearing about a teacher making such a dick move.

Here’s the story, three students at the school- Kiera Thomas, Gemma Wright and Macey Daden- came up with a novel idea to raise money for Cancer Research UK,  they got their heads shaved with a cancer ribbon design shaved in. Here’s a pic:

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Now, the girls raised £800 for charity, so good on them. But what happened next will shatter your faith in mankind.

The school decided to remove the girls from their class because it was against their rules regarding dress and appearance. I mean, their headteacher, Jenny Jones, did say they “applauded” the girls for their charity work. Really? Seems to me like what you did, Jenny, was treat them like crap and pedantically enforce a petty rule.

Oh, and if the school applauds them why did their head of year apparently told them it was a “pathetic way” to raise money. Yeah, stay classy, St Leonard’s you’ve basically embarrassed and punished three kids for finding a harmless, fun way of raising money for charity.

First of all, I can’t see why they’d kick off and aside from expletives, why the hell should a school have a say over how it’s students wear their hair? When I was in school, we had to wear a uniform- shirt, shoes,tie, jumper, skirts for the girls- and there were tons of other little rules about jewelry and all sorts. The only thing that was ours to do as we liked was our hair. This is when I started growing my hair long, and my scruffy, tangled mess has stuck since. I liked having my hair long and scruffy, not just because I’m lazy and like old school rockers, but also because it was me. My hair was my choice and under my control, unless there was a family wedding coming up.

I get that schools want their students to look fairly tidy, but screw that, they should be allowing some individuality. A person’s hair is their own business, and forcing them to have certain cuts is bad enough, but going after girls who’ve shaved their hair for charity is a whole other level of dickery. So, shame on you St Leonards.

Anyway, if you want to donate to the girl’s campaign here’s a link to their JustGiving page.

Story here.

Soundtrack for this blog: “Hair” by Lady Gaga.

Any thoughts? You know what to do. BETEO.


Arthur

Reporter: What do you call that hairstyle you’re wearing?
George: Arthur
(A Hard Day’s Night)

I think I need a haircut.
I don’t get my haircut often, and the last few times it’s been done either by myself or my mum.
In school admitting your mum cut your hair was a big taboo and a one way ticket to loser town.
But here’s the thing, to get my hair cut I have to take my glasses off, rendering me almost blind. And I don’t like having a stranger being behind me with a sharp implement. I want to know my killer.
I need to cut my hair because it’s getting to be a pain in the ass, especially when I go running.
And if the summer turns out hot I’ll either have to sweat or go the ponytail route, and while I personally like the ponytail (cos of the Steven Seagal thing) I fear I’m in the minority.
For the last decade or so I’ve kept the same haircut, which I like to see as being a whole untamed barbarian thing, kinda like when Sean Connery is released in The Rock.
But with potential interviews to come later this year maybe it’s time to grow up and actually try a style for a change, not just letting it do it’s thing.
The thing is I’m lazy, and also don’t see the point in styling hair, so I’d need something low maintenance yet tidy. I can’t shave my head cos it’s massive and a weird shape, I’d look like an asteroid or something.
Ugh I may have to bite the bullet and see a barber.
But if I lose a year or get whacked in the chair, I’m gonna be pissed.
Look it was late and I had to use my iPod, okay?
Any thoughts? You know what to do. BETEO