Wednesday, January 6, 2010
The Bearded Stranger
We've had our awkward adolescent days. We had last summer when he refused to swim without a shirt on, and I had to wonder what was growing under the shirt. Was it a siamese twin growing out of the side of his body? There are the fangs growing in on both sides of his mouth. There's the routine humiliations of adolescence - the pimples, the braces - things the whole world can see. But a sparse, scraggly, hillbilly-looking blonde beard?
Clearly the fact that this thing exists can be blamed on Husband. Just like I'm always on the look out for Daughter's signs of adolescence ("Do you want a training bra yet? How about now? Now?") it's up to Husband to be on red alert with his responsibilites. He should've noticed scraggly hair number one before it began multiplying. And just because Bar Mitzvahzilla has somehow managed to pop out blonde facial hair in a family of swarthy Jews, that's no excuse for Husband not to notice it.
I grew up watching my dad shave with a double-edged razor and shaving soap in a cup. Because he had a cleft in his chin, each day he'd come away wounded with tiny pieces of toilet paper stuck to all the cuts on his face. Not only would he get wounded, but the minute he was done, right after he'd slapped on his Old Spice, his 5:00 shadow was growing back in, he was that hairy.
I can handle all the nitty gritty discussions with Bar Mitzvahzilla and Daughter about sex, all the generalities about how this works or that, but when it comes down to teaching the boy to shave, Husband's just going to have to take out the stropping blade and teach him. Before scraggly hair number four grows in.