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the hair up there

History (Fictional)

News flash: Sierra Leone!

Archaeologists have donned diapers in response to their bladders responding to the sheer excitement incited by the greatest discovery of the 20th century. The granite slab was barely out of the earth, still dripping that sedimentary placenta, when telegraphs began to shoot across the globe. Surely, they sticattoed, this is it! Science is on the cusp! About to unlock the guarded secrets of antiquity!

Men of math, men of science, men of history and of art all gathered to marvel over and gaze upon the slate. The enormous linen tent bustled with our worlds greatest minds as a salty net would bustle with so much Atlantic cod. All eyes were focused on the rock, peeping toward the message scrawled upon its ancient surface. And as the tics and tacs of that prehistoric language were deciphered, while those words slowly joined together to form complete and coherent thoughts, the awesome meaning was revealed unto the men. They fell back onto their considerable haunches, pulling the copper J’s of their bifocals out from behind their ears and thoughtfully placing them into their mouths; they were ruminating.

What we have here, bellowed Barnybus Macnshester, makes the Rosetta Stone look like a fucking nursery rhyme. The tent nodded approvingly.

One week later and it was time to tell the world. Fathers came home from work early, the planet tuned in their radios, and Manchester began his transmission:

My fellow humans who were not important enough to be there when it happened,

As you know by now, an incredible tablet was unearthed from the proud soil of that far off continent, Africanus Majorus. As we gazed into the secret letters scrawled upon its surface, we wondered what they would speak to us; we wondered hard as scientists often do.

What we discovered was something much more important than anything we could’ve imagined; important to the degree that I am here now, aching to finish my introduction so that I may divulge its contents unto the masses. I am done with the intro and will proceed to let it rip.

(Sipping noise) That water’s refreshing. Thank you.

Dear rock,

The Tyrannosaur has devoured my village. I am the last caveman on earth. The last cavewoman, Sharon, refuses to touch me. She calls me names, not realizing that the fate of Dinoland is in our very cavehands. If only there was something I could do to persuade her. I wish Daryl’s recipe for Cosmopolitans hadn’t slipped into the tar pit before he died. If she would drink, we could populate; of the very little early science I have established, that stands as absolute fact. Tomorrow I am going to try to invent Cave-Gin, assuming that the thunderlizard doesn’t come back and destroy me.

Life's a cavebitch,
Missing Link.

There is a great gap in the text, but it resumes towards the bottom, continued Manchester.

Dear rock,

Success! OMG! We did it! We have created a beautiful little cavebaby! It emerged from Sharon's vagina, grabbed a spear, and immediately joined in with the fight against the dinosaur.

How did I do it, you ask? How did I get her attention? When did I invent the creative writing device of asking myself questions within my journal of secrets and stone?

Check it,

Following rejection after rejection, no longer able to bear the burden that my social ineptitude would lead to the very downfall of cavemankind, I grew frustrated with life. I decided that I would rather take my own than let the smug Tyrannosaur eat me, than let Sharon continually humiliate me in front of that slobbering dragon. So, with suicide in my cavemind, I went to the ocean, grabbed the nearest terrible prehistoric predator, a littleneck clam, held the monster against my throat and waited for it to shred my supple caveskin to pieces.

But you know what? The mollusk did not draw that drowsy curtain of enternal slumber. Instead, the clam merely snapped off a patch of neck hair. I tried again and again to take my life, but over and over again the clam merely snipped away my ruffage, never quite opening my neck and spilling the crimson elixir of life onto this molten ground.

When I returned home, defeated and hairless from my encounter with the battle clam, Sharon flipped the fuck out. She called me smooth, she called me handsome; she would later call out to the Ape Gods if you catch my meaning. ;-)

I feel that this, allowing a clam to snap away the remainder of monkey-heritage that stinks upon my face, is my greatest invention. The tides of lava are turning in my favor, defeating the Tyrannosaur is in the cards, and it is only a matter of time before Dinoland is transformed into a wonderland of my hairless progeny. To celebrate, I intend to invent the guitar solo.

Can I get a witness?
The first sophisticated Man in history.

History (Actual)

Although there is no documented fossil evidence, it is a common belief amongst shaving enthusiasts that the first cases of male facial follicle alteration were achieved with sets of seashell tweezers. The first shaving razors, a tool created specifically for the act of shaving, are made of flint 30,000 years before Jesus and his Christ-beard would walk the earth. Flint razors, which would dull incredibly quickly, left the face covered with bleeding rashes. To be a man way way back in the day was to choose between beard or scaby visage. This is also the time that ancient mothers invented the phrase, If you pick at it, it will only get worse. Domestic disputes are invented a short time after.

Indians (red dots, not feathers) and Egyptians are using permanent copper razors regularly by 3,000 years before Christ. The Egyptians are responsible for the first professional barbers, men who kept the kings and their fellows obsessively clean shaven. Those who visited Egypt from far away lands, friends and enemies alike, were unbarbered and hairy; bearded, uncivilized invaders would soon become known as barbarians. Egyptians shave their cats before mummifying them.

350 B.C: Alexander the Great shaves regularly, sparking an aesthetic trend followed by Romans and Greeks alike. The first shave, an event which takes place on a Roman’s twenty first birthday, is an elaborate event which includes gift giving, drinking and signifies his official entry into adulthood. Friends and family all take turns shaving a portion of the man’s face at the grand affair. The only Romans excluded from this cultural clipping are those on their way to becoming philosophers. Whisker twirling, beard swishing, thoughtful tugging of goatees; all common associations of the beard and intellectual prowess begin with the philosophers right to grow.

100 B.C: Sicilians introduce the thin-blade iron razor that comfortably shaves off facial hair with little soap and water. This is the last major shaving innovation for thousands of years. The history of shaving becomes quite dull. The history of shaving is cut short. The history of shaving slows its growth. The history of shaving, a once bristling and lively beard of ingenuity and thoughtful spark, is reduced to the pathetic fluff of the thirteen year old lip.

Cut to 1895 and King Camp Gillette, the baltimore salesman who dreams of affordable, disposable, comfortable shaving. He crosses paths with MIT genius Bill Nickerson during his travels to Boston and the two set out to create a hoe-like razor that will change the face of shaving. Their first design receives a patent that very year. To celebrate, the men shave comfortably and affordably.

World War One: every enlisted United States soldier receives a Gillette disposable razor with his fatigues and weaponry. The clean shaven Army is a global smash, Gillette opens factories overseas, and shaving ones face on a daily basis becomes standard practice. Gillette and Nickerson become incredibly wealthy and purchase matching locomotives.

Facial hair as Icon

It is the rebel that defines history.

The growth and mastery of an iconic strip of facial hair is an action more powerful than a stick of dynamite. To create and brandish an original moustache or beard is to achieve immortality; that fur will outlast the body’s mechanisms and means for survival. The greatest intellectual, artistic, political, and public minds were familiar with this theory. They knew that, if not for their ideas, at least the image of their caterpillars and cabbage patches would carry them into the history books.

Fuck Debeers and fuck diamonds, the moustache is forever.

The Moustache of Power

Adolph Hitler based his moustache on that sported by The Tramp character created by Charlie Chaplin. At the time it was affable; that small square of stubble grown to fruition was an international image, one that he hoped would make his public persona more friendly and familiar to the youth of Germany. Of course, now this style of cut is synonymous with genocide, with evil, with the venomous barking black and white images of Hitler rallying his foul armies. This moustache will never be grown again.

Stalin’s broad, Eastern Block stretch of communist whiskers is, to this day, one of the most magnificent moustaches ever grown. It is sheer power to be behold, poetry in motion, the Tessla coils sprouting from beneath that vodka stained nose. The man who transformed the USSR from an agriculturally gifted stretch of frozen tundra into global superpower was no doubt influenced by Lenin’s prodigious goatee. This is the moustache of robust revolution, a style that would one day be adopted by Saddam Hussein.

I am the first American to win a Nobel Prize in any category! I am the first president to make an official trip outside of the United States! I am responsible for the Panama Canal! I boxed frequently in the White House! I am the first president to ride in an automobile! Although it is not confirmed, many claim that I shot the last White Rhino on planet Earth during my post-presidency safari that killed more than 5,000 wild beasts! You cannot have a moustache like mine! I cut a hole through central America! If you grow this moustache, I will rise from the dead and trounce you with my boundless energy! Guffaw!

The Moustache of Thought

An excerpt from Origin of Species:

A beard cannot be willed into existence; the purest volition will not bring about the satisfying itch of mutton chops waiting to burst through your weak and pathetic jawbone, no tonic nor salve has been conceived to accelerate the process. There is no recipe.

Facial hair, a face full of hair, must be earned like the red breast of the robin, like the kaleidoscopic plumage of the wild peacock, like the purple heart of the war hero. The surest way, the only way to receive what you desire so badly is to survive; surviving will get you your moustache! Nature weeds out the weak, and those men who fail to ripen will never see their face adorned with the badge of true grit. Natural Selection! Live long enough and you shall see the soup strainer eek its way out from under snout, slowly commuting into your chowders and colas. The juice that dribbles from bratwurst and andelou sausage will collect in small pools that cling to your whiskers. You will develop a proclivity towards slurping bits of culinary flotsam into your eager maw. The bottom lip, a swaft of muscle whose sole purpose was to be sucked and nibbled upon during passionate bouts of missionary railing will be reborn. It will rise from the ashes of wanton service and begin life anew, sweeping and scooting pieces of flauta, rolling the seared ahi that dangles from your handlebar much like the dung beetle rolls shit across the african savanna: purposefully, carefully, skillfully, radfully.

It’s evolution, baby.

Einstein, the greatest mind of all time, the Man of the Century as lauded by Time Magazine, understood the power of a moustache. For the scientist who reportedly wore the same variety of clothes day in and day out as not to spend any time thinking about the triviality of his wardrobe, he consistently dedicated that small A.M. portion of the day to moustache maintenance and grooming. As he constantly expressed an admiration for Buddhism and the meditative calm of pipe smoking, it makes sense to believe he found his grooming sessions soothing and tranquil. Einstein invented a refrigerator that contained no moving parts and a moustache that contatined the secrets of the universe.

Nietzsche coined the phrase, God is dead. He attacked romanticism and is often credited for sewing the seeds of postmodernism and existentialist thought. His moustache was of the walrus variety, a full handlebar that completely covers the mouth. He wrote of his facial hair: He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. When you gaze long into the abyss, the abyss also gazes into you. Do I have something in my teeth? You do not know because my hair covers them from sight. Is there a God? You do not know because his beard hangs over your mind.

to be continued...