Guest Blog by Bruce Devereaux
Because of the itching involved I’ve never been very good at growing facial hair, although every morning when I sleepily splash water on my face and pick up a razor I’m tempted to try again.
But due to events outside of my control I recently went three weeks without a shave. You see, my hand was forced when I felt the tingle above my top lip.
“Dad’s got a coleslaw,” the kids will announce when stress or sun or lack of sleep deliver me this evil.
“Well tell Herpe-Boy not to kiss me!” Tracey will call back. She’s always very supportive like that.
I rarely get cold sores, but trust me, the last thing you want to do with one is shave it. I chose to grow a moustache. While I always aim for a Tom Sellick I generally look more like a fascist dictator. This time, rather than end up with a Hitlerish grub of whiskers beneath my nose, I chose to let my cheeks and chin blossom and just trim the jowls.
Naturally all this new hairiness invited lots of comments from my customers.
“It’s not Movember,” I was told more than once. I tried to tell them it was Mopril, but most didn’t buy it.
By the end of the week the tingle above my upper lip was gone. I was about to shave when a lovely customer, who I really must remember to send a card to this Christmas, commented with the beard coming in I looked a bit like George Clooney. On an unrelated topic I decided to keep growing this bad boy out and ended up not shaving for another two weeks.
Conversations were a little repetitive after that.
“It looks good on you,” a customer would say.
“Apparently it’s very George Clooney,” I’d happen to mention, after which they’d laugh: sometimes rudely. Some would be very pro-whiskers, some very against. I can’t help but feel the ones who were against it were being more honest.
Still enough customers in need of cataract surgery agreed it looked good so I kept growing the fuzz, even though it was infuriatingly itchy.
I wasn’t even tempted to shave it off after one customer harshly disagreed with the George Clooney comparison, adding, “I’d say it’s more George Michael.” Fine by me. I figure there are people knocking eagerly on both their doors.
So what finally had me tearing at my face with a couple of blunt razors? The catalyst was when a lady at work decided, even more than the Georges, I reminded her of an iconic Australian actor.
Hugh Jackman? Heath Ledger? Sadly, no.
Russell Crowe? Eric Bana? I’m afraid not.
Jack Thompson? I’ll even take Bill Hunter.
But no, it was none of those blokes.
Trust me to reject the Rolf Harris look? You sure can.
Bruce started his blog because friends and family kept wanting to know how he managed to feed and clothe such a large family while still having fun and being able to afford holidays and beer. He had no idea, but thought if he started writing things down some sort of pattern might emerge. When not at work Bruce enjoys reading, writing, hiding from his children and not changing nappies. He’s recently taken up the cycling challenge with a view to surviving long enough to see all his kids out the door so he can finally sleep in.