Saturday, April 13, 2013

Vacation home in Mecca? Not just yet

CHIN HAD not know razor for several weeks when the Stormy Petrel yesterday ended an extended period of aggrieved silence with an SMS. If the Professor happened to be placid, hungry and prepared to behave, then her friend, who is at home at the range, would find room at the table for an item of XY eye candy. They were not quite her words, but dewy sentiment rang clear. After a month of silence, foolish female pride had been abandoned and that little misunderstanding concerning the metallic-pastel Micra observed overnight in the Billabong’s driveway must have been forgotten. This was welcome news indeed, as it obviated the need to take another shot at a credible explanation for its owner lingering beyond breakfast.  The text message, which arrived mid-putt, seemed that most wonderful manifestation of modern feminism: a liberated and eager woman taking the initiative. Why modern gals grumble – many of them, anyway – about unwanted overtures is quite the mystery. What could be nicer than the direct proposition? It is flattering, efficient and obviates the cost in cash and carbon emissions of preliminary investment in several courses of multi-cultural munga and two seats at the Westgarth.

Hmmm, but those whiskers. Should they go or stay? A bit of stubble is quite the thing these days and has worked wonders for many. What other explanation can there be for Waleed Aly’s appeal to those who hire and fire at Fairfax and the ABC. It is quite clear the man has nothing else to recommend him, least of all coherent thought, so it must be the zyph that has turned so many influential heads. Either that, or Radio National is run by people keen to cite at their own dinner parties evidence of that wonderful, open-minded acceptance which regards a fellow who keeps his wife in a sack as not merely representing a more enlightened world but a better and fairer one. Why not make like Wally and present for dinner with bristles intact?

The beard won, in part, it must be admitted, because the golf club bar proved hard to leave and there simply wasn’t time upon stepping into the shower to have it off. Therein the folly of squeezing an extra vodka tonic, although the gravity of this indulgence would not become obvious until much later in the evening.

The food was lovely, as promised, and another guest’s two bottles of Argentinian malbec even tastier. We have, in Australia, many bodies devoted to redressing racism and lifting the burden of oppression from villifed minorities, so many, in fact, that Prime Minister Abbott will probably need more than three years (and a bit of a ginger from inside his own party) to dismantle them all. In the meantime, a clever strategy might be to shift the race bureaucrats' focus to advancing the equality of now-obscure ethnic varietals. The bureaucrats would keep their jobs, which would forestall any protests about racialist injustice, and they might indeed find the new brief a good deal more satisfying. Surely there is more appeal in sharing the spotlight with a good drop than admiring the Soul-Glo sheen of the latest trotted-out mullah's worshipful beard?

Now let us be clear that the Professor’s whiskers were nowhere near being in the same league as those of the tea-cosied cleric who several weeks ago laid out for Q&A’s audience the reason why there is no need to get upset about Islam’s hatred of homosexuals. He went on about it at some length, but the unspoken gist, judging by his fellow guests’ reaction and other of the programme’s questions, would appear to be that it is acceptable for Muslims to consign sodomites to eternal flame, sometimes with the aid of crane and rope in the public square, because, well, Muslims are not Catholics.

This post is not, however, about the equality of all cultures, but the caprice of female passion.

“Eewwww!” the Petrel exclaimed. “You look like an old derro.” Normally quite accepting of otherness -- indeed, eager to extol it -- her tolerance could not stretch to the non-religiously hirsute. There would be no happy bonding after that.

This morning the beard vanished scrape-by-scrape down the plughole, a painful reminder that cheap razors are no bargain. But little cuts and all, a reminder, too, that a bald chin is still better than the acceptance to be gained with Allah-sanctioned bristles.

In the fridge a handsome shoulder of pork, rubbed hard with salt and mustard, awaits tonight’s appointment with the barbecue. No, not for affection, and certainly not delectation, would it be worth joining the Prophet’s disciples, not even to persuade a progressive miss of her obligation to revere a handsome chin and jaw, and other bits beside, replete with manly growth.



  1. What a relief not to be assailed by Ben Cubby after nearly two weeks of rechecking.

  2. Rubs 'em red raw, they reckon.

  3. Were The Three Little Infidels telling porkies to save their bacon?
    "Open the door and let me come in."
    "Not by the hairs on our chinny-chin-chins."

  4. Elizabeth (Lizzie) B.April 13, 2013 at 6:48 PM

    Hirsute he-males must be clipped, shorn and shaved occasionally, good Prof, for the sake of civilisation as we know it. This is a view I hold with regard to my own Hairy Ape. Gentlemen do often find that there is a little bit of Delilah in many females (indeed, we occasionally practice on ourselves, so we are transparently fair about this). Our desire to uphold civilisation is often commented upon even by such as elder feminist icon Ms. Summers, who indeed once called us "God's Police" when she was not calling us something else.

    This veering to the civilised is particularly emphasised when we give proper consideration to the uncivilised and hirsute things going on in some of our religiously re-configuring suburbs, as you so ably recount above for us. There do seem to be some rather unpleasant as well as potentially explosive things going on here which Ms. Summers and her friends at the ALPBC have unaccountably missed for investigation or comment.

    The Romans, by contrast, were awake to how civilisation came to the beardless. In the no-nonsense earlier days of the Empire, the term 'barbarian' was coined, and applied. You had to shave, or be on the outer, in the Senatorial stakes anyway.

    It was the Emperor Hadrian, I believe, with his peripatetic wanderings and his own view on many things masculine, who put paid to that, and from then on, beards were it and in whenever one was in Rome, or when in Constantinople, as one was more and more often in those latter days of Antiquity. Thus it is that since the Decline and certainly since the Fall, beards have seen periods of in and outness, to say nothing of the fiddling with their shape that has occurred. Personally, I still blame the barbarians for keeping alive the beard, ready for its moments in history. Anyway, for myself, I prefer the smoother look (as long as it feels that way too whenever it matters).

    The natural growth of the keratin substance (and I do not refer to fingernails here) was also keenly approved in that other Great Empire of our cultural attachment, whose Queen never got over the loss of her own hirsute Prince and thus kept all other chaps hoping to gain favour by sticking to that deceased Prince's hairy bearded image. As the good Queen obviously knew, there is, after all, something delightful for the full-blooded female in noting that men are rather different in this respect, sprouting forth all over the place as they do, as indeed they are interestingly different in other ways that I am far too delicate to mention.

    Which all brings us to the question of the Micra. They are a nifty little car and I hired one myself in the UK some time ago, Prof, but they can never be mistaken for the vehicle of a visiting hirsute hunter of trout arrived to show off his latest success to his buddy and friend. Oh no. A Micra requires Direct Action, some of which it sounds as though you received. Well done, she. And well done too for that 'flattering and efficient' recant on her earlier position; we are Ladies, and thus posture we must, but retrieval is sometimes the better part of our harumphing.

    Buy a better razor and try again, Prof, is my best advice.

  5. What's wrong with a beard and mo?

    1. Elizabeth (Lizzie) B.April 15, 2013 at 5:51 PM

      Tickles and sheds, can look wispy on beta males, collects food and saliva, may smell, hides the reality of the face, and is totally barbarian if left to grow free. Civilised men shave. A bit of designer stubble is OK on some men at some times.

      By way of contrast, a hairy chest is a joy to a woman seeking somewhere comforting to rest her head, and feel (and even sniff) the man in him while his strong arms enfold her.

      Different altogether to a beard.

  6. Here is a potential avenue for business or charity: donate facial hair for allah: