Each year, I have this strange desire to grow a beard. I think perhaps it stems from a desire to prove my manliness since I’m not really into moster trucks, hunting or WWF wrestling! It also perhaps relates to my experience playing Tevye in “Fiddler on the Roof” at Hillcrest High School back in 1991. The “papas” were all told to grow beards if they could. As the 17-year-old lead in the play, I was unable to grow a beard, even though several my fellow actors were able to do so. And so each night of the show, I would come in a few hours early and endure an uncomfortable 45-minutes of getting a beard glued onto my chin, piece by piece, so it would look as real as possible. Robyn Mousley, one of the directors, would use this ammonia-smelling latex material that was really gross. The fake beard was itchy and hot, and I did not like it. Oh, if I could only grow my own beard, I thought!
After scene four (the bar scene where Tevye and Lazar Wolf drink “To Life”), my mustache would start to come off because it was soaking wet from the fake vodka (water) I drank in that scene, so I would have to quickly glue it back on with spirit gum! It would dry fairly quickly and get all crusty, just in time for me to go back onto the stage for a conversation with Tzietel and Motel the tailor about their plans for marriage. Talk about having a stiff upper lip!
Anyway, growing a beard has become an annual tradition for me. And I figured that my last week at my old job followed by a week of vacation before beginning my new job at the bank would be the perfect time to grow it. I’ve never before grown a FULL beard for two weeks, and I have to say that it looked pretty good. Robin says she liked it better than the smaller “Van Dyke”-style beard I have grown in years past.
My kids thought it would be fun for me to make a video of myself shaving and then speed it up and set it to music! So for your entertainment purposes, I have included the 1-minute video here. Enjoy!