- meddling with the forces of nature -

"Would you like me to trim your beard?" she asked last night.

It could be that Viv's suggestion of a neck hair trim -- just a quickie with the clippers was her phrase -- it could be that this whole thing was just a ruse to get me into the chair to pursue her secret agenda: snipping toward her own ideal of what a husband's beard, indeed just a husband in general, should be.  Gosh, do ya think?

Okay look, here's the thing.  Husbands don't have beards.  Men have beards.  The real estate of a man's face is sovereign territory, and any attempt to go there without the express written consent of Major League Baseball is tantamount to trespassing.

"Would you like me to trim your beard?" she said.

Okay, granted, she's standing over me with a sharp implement and asking a pointed question, but I could still take her.  Her elbow is right in my bite-line and her shins are vulnerable.  Trim a man's beard.  

Okay, granted, it's a little wiry.  Beards do that.  You get a wild hair or two and bingo, you've got character.  It's devil-may-care.  It says tramp steamer, Foreign Legion, Aconcagua.

And then in my head I get this picture of Charleton Heston.  Sure, as Moses with the long flowing beard, but also as Chuck the iron-jawed lizard-brained poster boy for the NRA warning us all about the erosion of rights and how the bleeding-heart liberals are chipping away at America's freedom in tiny increments until one day poof we're all in the gulag.  And that's how the women are gonna do it to us guys, one scissor snip at a time until one day we up and find we're no longer the masters of our own cheeks and chins.  The beard is domino number one, followed by a long line of sneakily negotiated concessions and then before you know it she's telling you to sit down in the tub so she can sponge down your wee-wee.  Don't think I just sit here in my little room unawares.  I have eyes.  I have ears.  All I have to do is peek through my Laura Ashley blinds to see row after row of houses where women have set about taming their men.  Sickening.

I want you men to get up out of your chairs, throw open the window, stick your head out and yell -- "My beard's pokey as hell and I'm not gonna take this anymore!"

Okay, granted, it was starting to catch crumbs and stuff.  Maybe some spaghetti sauce.  Mayonnaise once.  But that's part of that whole Henry VIII/Zorba/Alpha Male mystique.  Leaf through any copy of Pirate Life Magazine and you'll see what I'm talking about.

But.  I did notice less kissing.  And when I tried to do my long smoldering gazes into her eyes all I got were hers gazing back about five inches south, checking for flotsam.

So I had to draw the line.  Make the sacrifice.  I needs me my smooches, people.

So it's shorter now, and its capacity to serve as a meal filter is diminished which is actually bad news for the wife when you consider that all the stuff that doesn't stick in the beard goes directly onto the shirt which goes directly onto the laundry pile, and the laundry pile will never ever ever be part of that whole Henry VIII/Zorba/Alpha Male mystique.  A man's gotta draw the line somewhere.

Okay, the operative word there is "somewhere."  I'm not all lizard brain.  Sometimes I can think way up top just underneath the shiny parts of my forehead where, as any brain surgeon can tell you, reside the Lobes of Compromise.  This area dictates that we must pick our fights carefully and listen with reason if we want a relationship with honesty.  Or respect.  Or nookie.

Can you tell I have a lot to say about this?  Some feelings maybe?  I could sit here and write all day on the subject of marriage, but I can't just now because it's time to add the fabric softener.


  today's music:

"Just Like A Woman" -- Bob Dylan -- BLONDE ON BLONDE


today's wisdom:

"What a piece of work is a man! How noble in reason! How infinite in faculty! In form, in moving, how express and admirable! In action how like an angel! In apprehension how like a god! The beauty of the world! The paragon of animals!

- William Shakespeare (Hamlet, II, ii)

  You can thank Cecil B. DeMille
 for the pic of Heston.