Wednesday, November 10, 2004
two observations observed after observing people at work
[No time for introductions]
[Or is it "moustache"? I think the more common spelling is mustache, but I prefer moustache, so that's what we're gonna go with from here on out.]
There's a guy who works in my building. I don't know him personally, but I've seen him around. I suppose he's an attorney, but I'm not entirely sure; he may be a firm administrator. At any rate, he's well-to-do. He's white, of average height and build, a little thin on top, but seems to be otherwise very vibrant and healthy (and no, I don't have a man crush on him).
The thing is, over the past month or so, he's been rocking a moustache. He never had any facial hair before, and now he has this weird moustache thing going on.
At first, I thought it was a joke. He seems like a funny guy, so I thought he was either doing it on a dare or had a lost a bet, which should tell you how ridiculous it looks on him. But that was over a month ago, and he's still rocking the 'stache.
My comment is this: for white guys, there has been an unspoken moratorium on moustache growing since 1989. Effective on January 1 of that year, if you had a moustache prior to that date, you could keep your moustache without fear of repercussion, reprisal, or reprobation. After that date, you were/are not allowed to grow a moustache, unless either a) it's a joke; b) someone dared you; or c) you lost a bet. This is entirely non-negotiable.
1) Race. This only applies to white guys. Black guys can grow a moustache at any point in time and look cool. I went to high school with a black guy named Derrick who I am convinced had a moustache from at least age 6, possibly earlier. The same applies to Hispanic guys, especially those with the pencil thin ones (still, no one has explained to me how they do this - I think I would look most totally fucking excellent with a paper thin line of hair outline my overly chubby cheeks).
Asian guys are a little more difficult. On the one hand, the average Asian can never grow a moustache, and rocks the "I have 20 long hairs on my upper lip" look, also know as the "Jason Mulgrew in 9th grade" look. But on the other hand, the Asian people are responsible for one of the greatest moustache incarnations of all-time: the Fu Manchu. Verdict? Asian guys can grow the moustache whenever they like.
2) Totality of facial hair. This only applies when the moustache is used as a stand-alone facial hair look. This does not apply if the moustache is part of a goatee, beard, or some other crazy concoction. My favorite crazy concoction is the mutton chops look, sported here by George Westinghouse, founder to Westinghouse Electric Corp, the precursor of CBS. It is also rocked by George's descendent Kenny Westinghouse, shown here after just finishing off his thirteenth can Coors Extra Gold.
An example of when it's ok for white guys to grow the 'stache: when I was a sophomore in college, one of my roommates, the recently married Mike, had a brother, Eustace, who at the time was a senior. We worshipped Eus and his roommates, because as soon as we came in as freshman, they took us under their wing, invited us to their parties, got us drunk, etc.
During their senior year, they decided to have a moustache party, meaning any guy who wanted to get into the party had to grow a 'stache. They hung signs and huge banners all over the campus, saying mysteriously, "Got 'Stache? 2/12".
The party was a huge success, but I missed it. At the time I was dating a girl long-distance, so I presume I went to see her to do my best to convince her that no, I was not making out with other girls at bars after they'd had too many kamikaze shots, and that no, I had never and would never pay for sex (surprisingly, our relationship ended).
But seeing those guys around campus pre-party with their moustaches was absolutely fucking hilarious. I've been trying to convince my roommates to have a moustache party, but unfortunately they are almost completely hairless (so much so that we call my roommate Ben "Baby Ben", because naked he looks like a big baby, although not as hot).
At any rate, them's the moustache rules. I don't make them up; I just follow them.
[Well, technically I did just make them up, but whatever]
I work with a lot of women, whether they are administrators, associate attorneys, or partners. And let me tell you something, the rocks on these women's fingers have to be worth upwards of fifteen lives in any third-world country.
Good lord - I consider myself a stalwart of heterosexuality, a true man's man who doesn't know how to wear a scarf, says things like, "How hard can it be to plan a wedding?", and would rather eat his own poo than go shopping for shoes. But there have been times when I've walked into these women attorneys' offices and been distracted by the glare coming off these rings.
Two things to discuss here as well:
1) The fact that all day long I see engagement rings that are larger than at least three of the moons of Saturn is really going to warp my perception of the whole "buying a ring" process. How am I supposed to go to a jeweler with a bag full of nickels, a Sega Genesis, and some old Playboy's and expect to get a decent-sized ring?
I'll tell you what's going to happen - one day, far, far away from now, when I dupe a woman who has just the right amount of low self-esteem and psychosis into marrying me, I'm going to wind up mortgaging my life away for a giant fucking ring. I know this. I can be a sucker for perception with this kinda thing, and I know that I'm going to spend the first ten years of my married life making Christmas presents out of construction paper and popsicle sticks and eating bologna at every meal because I went $30,000 into debt to make myself look good to get my lady some bling-bling.
Damn it all to hell.
2) The reason that these women have giant rocks is that they're fiancées are all very successful. I've never heard a very successful woman in my profession (or around my profession) say, "My fiancée is a social worker" or "My fiancée is a graphic designer, but he also waits tables." No, they all say, "My fiancée is head of equity research at Morgan Stanley" or "My fiancée is vice general counsel at Merrill Lynch."
On top of that, it's sort of par for the course for older men to date younger women. Many of the women I know in their late 20's have serious boyfriends/fiancées/husbands who are in their mid to late 30's, possibly older. This bothers me, but also offers me hope.
It's gross for me to think of any of my female friends dating anyone over 30 (and we're only 25!). I don't know why...but it just does. Why would a 25 year-old girl want to date a man who's...well, old? Why would a 25 year-old girl not want to date, say, me instead? I certainly have less hair (on my head) than most 30 year-olds, so what gives? Is it because I'm impotent? Look, the doctor said that Cialis isn't right for everyone. I'm working on this - trust me.
On the other hand, it makes perfect sense to me why an older man would want a younger woman. I don't even need to explain this, but if I were 35, single, and rich, you'd better bet that I'd be trolling the bar scene, looking for some hot, dumb 22 year-old to buy gifts for and tote around town. As a matter of fact, I'm currently doing close inspections of middle/junior high schools in and around the Upper East Side, just so I get dibs on any up-and-coming hotties as early as possible.
(You know, I'm just gonna quit now before I fall too far behind)