It all started in October. That’s when I first caught sight of you in my mind’s eye and fell for you–or at least my projected image of you. You were svelte, tight, sharp, shadowy, and gentle to touch. I wanted you on me as soon as possible.
With November coming fast on the heels of a drunken and stupor-filled Halloween, I decided the time was now to pursue you in earnest. No more half-heartedness and simply fooling around.
Every day, I’d look for you. Slowly, you came out to me and I saw sides of you that I did not know existed. Beautiful sides. Ugly sides. Left sides. Right sides.
You revealed yourself to me gradually in patches. At first, I was happy with the progress being made in our newfound relationship. I imagined our lives together, braving the worst of winter with a rugged determination and stoicness befitting a political revolutionary or outdoorsman. I knew it would require careful maintenance and upkeep to make things work, but I felt ready for the challenge.
However, I became impatient and longed for more than you could give me at the time. A 5 o’clock shadow? You couldn’t even give me an 11 o’clock shadow!
November faded away and I grew jealous of all the other dudes who had long ago found theirs. They looked so warm and happy, smiling faces and souls given full definition by their beloveds. Plaintive and easy caresses that seemed to wash away their deepest concerns and fears at a moment’s notice.
I was not yet ready to let go. I couldn’t. I’d give you another month, a full December, to be where I needed you to be. A forlorn hope, as it would turn out. Wispy, uneven in temperament, and bristly at times. You defied me. Still, I hung on until the very end thinking that it could still happen and turn out A-okay.
That month is all but expired with 2017 being a mere chronological stone’s throw away. As much as it pains me to do so, it is time to let go of you. I can’t wait forever. I look in the mirror and don’t like what’s become of me. All I have are faint impressionistic strokes of thin hair that leave my face incomplete and blotched.
As I stand here with this razor in my hand, I know things will be okay. I can and will be happy without you, my face raw and fully exposed to the vicissitudes of the environment. We had a beautiful No Shave November and I will always remember that, but I don’t need you in order for my jawline to have meaning and definition.
I just have to accept the truth. Some men were meant to have beards; others were meant to be clean shaven. You and I were not meant to be(ard).