Sunday, June 17, 2007

Excuse me, I must groom...

Its this article that got me remembering...

I had the piss taken out of me at the recent wedding in Lincolnshire of Andy the vulnerable ex-bachelor, piss taken by my closest male friends, because my wife mentioned in passing, whilst we were all intoxicated in a pub, that I used Nivea for Men after shave balm.

I don't use it that often, in fact its a very small bottle and I've had it for about three years now so its effects (if it ever had any) are probably negligable by now, but still I freely admit to owning some Nivea for Men and I had taken it to the wedding, if only to impress the room maid in the hotel, and yes, I did rub some on on the wedding day.

Result was my closest male friends approaching me all day, brushing my jawline with the backs of their hands and declaring that my skin was silky smooth darling and how did I get that marvellous baby's bottom complexion after shaving ?

"Nivea for Men" I would tell them, "Its wonderful" and I would give them a dazzling Colgates smile and tell them to piss off and annoy someone else.

So why are men so bashfull about their grooming habits, why would I have to wear one of those joke spectacles/false nos/false moustache Groucho Marx stylee masks if I dared to venture anywhere near a salon that did mens treatments (if I could find one), why do I always feel furtive when browsing the miniscule mens grooming products shelf (singular shelf) in Debenhams ?

Having very little hair to speak of, ok having no hair to speak of, and that which I speak of usually being cropped right down to 1mm, I have no need for shampoo, conditioner, or any other chemical assistance in order to make the top of my head look good, I stick it under the shower every morning and don't even have to bother drying it - ladies all over the land are reading this now and feeling insanely jealous, its why I am usually ready to go out four hours and twenty minutes before any female in my house.

But having decided to forego the luxury of hair on the top of my head, my brain decided some time ago that it would be a good idea to grow hair elsewhere by way of compensation, yes ladies I'm talking ears and back now.

My uncle has the hairiest ears in the western world, in fact he no longer has ears, he just has two furry lumps at the side of his head rather like Buster the Bear, its unbelieveable that he hasn't noticed by now, its rather less unbelieveable that he is nearly deaf, theres nothing wrong with his ears its just that he listens to you from behind a fur blanket.

I live in fear of having furry ears like my Uncle Ken and so I shave them every day during my normal chin shaving regime and using a "proper" blade razor I sometimes cut them too as blade razors weren't really designed for ear shaving, you can sometimes see people staring at your ears and wondering "how did he cut his ear like that ?" but let them wonder, its that or the Buster the Bear look, I reckon it would take about three weeks for me to match up to my Uncle Ken if i didn't shave them.

Eyebrows get shaved every seven days or so I go blind otherwise, I don't mean that they get shaved off but they have to be trimmed when I can see them in my peripheral view, and by the way, I have been told by women since childhood that I have eyelashes to die for darling but thankfully they need no grooming care.

Nose hair is another thing, if left I would have an impressive ZZ Top stylee beard by now, all of it eminating from my nose, so every fourteen days or so the stuff is harvested by means of grabbing and wrenching, so much more satisfying than trimming with poncy nasal scissors, real men wrnech their hair out and theres no better feeling than howking a really long one out by its root, especially if its white, for some reason lots of my nasal hairs are now white, its weird.

And finally, if left unattended I would not be in need of a winter coat this year thanks to the prolific growth of hair on my back and arms, silver back gorillas in zoos have been known to step down from their tyres-on-a-rope and come to the front of their cage to stare in admiration at my testosterone fuelled coat of natural man-wool but I admit to shaving where I can reach every three months or so and then getting the woman who informs that she was betrothed to me in 1983 via an act of trickery ( I rememer nought) to finsh off the hard to reach bits and when she refuses I simply wear it in a mohican stylee down my back until she relents - I did once try to wax but people in the far North of Scotland wrote to me in complaint at the high pitched screaming noise that issued forth for most of the rest of the day and dogs in Egypt were said to cock their heads to one side listening intently for the next instruction.

So what do I need male grooming products for ?

The Times article mentioned seems to think that I have a fair sized wad of cash ready and willing to pour forth into bottles and tubes of nonsense that will make me somehow more attractive to the female species, well, I have two main issues with that objective.

One is that I have no desire to be more attractive to the female species, I already have three females in my house, two of whom may leave the premises in the next ten years or so but the older one tells me she's here to stay and that I must continue to keep her in the manner in which she has become accustomed until the day I fall off my perch and the insurance policy (which I have to pay for) takes over.

The other is that it is just, well, just, erm, lets not dilly-dally here, lets not shilly-shally with words here, purchasing and then applying magic balms and potions for your average male is just

Yes I know I admitted to owning some Nivea for Men right at the start of this and yes, maybe I've just admitted to being a little fey but I assure you that my wrist is not very limp when I apply it to the chin parts.

Yes I like the smell of it and yes I did read The Times article and wonder which potions I should purchase next and yes I've found somewhere where you can buy them online and yes I might just do that, so yes, I may just be "on the turn" - but I do not want to turn out like that man on the Grecian 2000 advert, I like my silver hair, its distinguished and when shaven close to the head looks blonde, looks like I've had highlights done, I like the effect - and I certainly do not want to turn out loking like David Guest who resembles something made on a production line with a shift change inbetween and no proper handover instructions left for the incoming assembly workers.

So I don't want jet black hair, I do not need anything at all with regards hair, I do not want rid of wrinkles for on men they are stately, I do not want fuller lips, or prominent cheekbones, do not require anything engorging or reducing, don't require smoother skin for courseness on men is a given, and have no problem with dry skin or water retention for that is what beer in pint jars and toilets are for.

All I really desire is a small manly-looking teak case with brass hinged lid and an engraved "HIM" on the lid, sitting on the dresing table next to all of Suzannes junk, just to remind her that the next time she goes online to Liz Earle then I'll be shopping for more man-potions as well.

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