Tag Archives: beards

Can I Speak To Your Beard?

“When Someone Has A Problem with Your Beard, Remember This… That’s Not Your Problem.”

“Beards Are An Acquired Taste. Don’t Like Them? Acquire Some Taste.”

“Awesome dads have tattoos and beards.”

Does a beard make you more approachable?

One thing that I have noticed over the last couple of years is that since I started growing my beard, more people engage me on the trail. When I was clean-shaven, most times I would barely get a nod from other folks, but now I am drawn into full-blown conversations with my fellow hikers. Even children speak to me (of course they think I look like Santa). But is it the beard? Is it the power and epic awesomeness of the beard that draws people in? 🙂 I can’t answer that question.

In a paper from 2014, it was found, however, that bearded men were found to be more trustworthy than our clean-shaven counterparts. For the life of me, I can’t figure that out.

Why am I writing about this you might ask? I really have no idea. I just saw this photo and figured I would make some observations. I’ve mentioned my beard in the past but as it grows longer, the more it grows on me (no pun intended). If you have been following my blog, or you know me, you know that I prefer solitude when I hike. I am am not a big people person when I am on the trails. As a matter of fact, I am not a people person period. Say that three times fast.

So will these kinds of forced interactions make me more of a people person and will I now choose to go out of my way to interact with hikers I don’t know?

I’m thinking that the answer to that is…no.

Let me know what you think. If you see a bearded gentleman and he doesn’t look like a crazed killer (or even if he does), are you more likely to say something to him than someone without a beard?

(If I haven’t said this already, I can write about just about anything,)


Don’t Fear The Beard!!!



Disclaimer: Don’t Fear The Beard

Almost two years ago I thought about throwing away my razors and letting my beard grow. I had given a great deal of thought to this idea over the years and I figured at this point in my life and career, why not? So that is exactly what I did.

After dutifully shaving for the four years in the Marine Corps and then for the next thirty years that I have worked in education, I have shaved just about every day that I have worked. Unfortunately, during my tenure as the Coordinator of Special Education, I assumed that a clean-shaven face was the way to go, so I shaved and shaved and shaved.

When I was unceremoniously let go as the Coordinator, I figured at that point what did I have to lose? I certainly had no one left to impress, so I went ahead and stopped shaving. Now I live by the motto, “No Shave To The Grave.” My current plan is not to ever shave again, Never, ever shave my face while I am still living and breathing.

But here is the question. Just how long should your beard be? You can start with a 5 o’clock shadow and go all the way to several feet of beard. Of course, this then teases the line between what appears normal and what appears to be just a little bit on the crazy side. If you measure it that way, I’ll take the crazy side, especially as it grows longer. Crazy is as crazy does.

But here is a second question. If you decide to just let your beard go, should you care? I say no. When you start listening to other people and what they think, then you have lost control of your beard. Plain and simple, Why grow it then? Because you can!

When I hike, people often ask me, “Aren’t you hot/cold?” And in every instance I say no. The beard is just there. It does not provide me with protection from the cold nor does it make me hot.

So here we are. The one good thing about my beard is that one thing is for sure. If you see me hiking anywhere in the Hudson Valley, you will know exactly who I am.