Thursday, September 24, 2015

Beards and Man Buns

Originally posted in the Miami News-Record on September 20, 2015

Last week I had the privilege of volunteering at the county’s Man Up conference. This was my second time to help out with Man Up and I gotta say….a lot has changed in two years. Now, keep in mind Paul and I have been out of youth ministry for over a year and a half now, and our kids are not in public school, so I guess that puts me at risk for being out of the loop when it comes to what’s going on with young dudes these days.

My husband graduated in 1982, back when moustaches were all the rage. You know, the moustaches I’m talking about – the ones usually worn by the creepy guys in movies who own cameras with telescopic lenses and drive vans with no windows. I graduated high school in 1991. Not one single guy in my glass walked the stage on graduation night with hair on his face. The guys of the early 90’s were more interested in the hair atop their noggins, not on their faces. Anyone remember the re-emergence of the bowl cut? How about shaving their jersey numbers into the sides of their heads? Oh and we can’t talk about guy hair in the 90’s without mentioning the frosted-tips on a super spikey, so-much-hair-gel-it-was-downright-dangerous ‘do.

Last week, if I hadn’t known I was at Man Up, I’d have sworn I was either at a lumberjack reunion or a Duck Dynasty convention. The beards on those boys! I was absolutely in awe of these 16 and 17 year old guys with more facial hair than Professor Dumbledore or Abraham Lincoln. And in doing “research” (read: I searched the Google) for this column, most men don’t really have the ability to grow serious facial hair until they are in their mid-20’s. So what is in the public water supply around here? Straight up testosterone mixed with a little Propecia??  

I also saw more than one man bun. If you haven’t seen one of these things yet, Google it. Or better yet, don’t. That is one trend I do not understand nor will I ever be able to embrace. I keep seeing these things here and there and I just don’t get it. I recently had about six inches cut off my own hair, so I know the value of a good messy bun day. When your hair is so long you can’t do anything with it other than bun it, it’s time for a trim. But if you want long hair, guys, let it hang gloriously down your back or gather it into a neat ponytail. Please don’t wrap it up strangely on top of your head like a little nubbin of keratin and protein and expect the vast majority of women to compliment you. Especially here in Oklahoma. I guarantee you, you probably can’t fit a John Deere or Realtree cap over that strange little bun so seriously, what’s the point?

At the risk of sounding like I have found a soap box on which to stand and shout, I will just end this with some friendly advice. As the wife of a redneck man and the mother of a nearly 17 year old guy, I have been in two barber shops multiple times over the last 23 years and never once have either of my boys come out with a man bun. Nick Koronis gave Sam his first haircut on his first birthday and over the last 17 years if Nick hasn’t been available, Larry Linthicum has stepped up and taken care of business. My husband has grown quite attached to Mr. Ed over the past few years as well and in my opinion, if Mr. Ed can’t take care of your hair cutting needs, you are entirely too high maintenance.

Keep it simple, fellas. Leave the buns to the baker.  

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