Wednesday, May 10, 2006

The Anti-Beard

“Here I swear, and as I break my oath may eternity blast me, here I swear that never will I forgive Myself! It is the only point on which I allow myself to encourage revenge. Oh, how I wish I were the Beard, that it were mine to crush the Shark; to hurl him to his native Ocean never to rise again / I expect to gratify some of this insatiable feeling in Picture.”

Over at the Battle of Alberta, Sacamano is placing the entire blame for the Oilers 2-0 deficit against the San Jose sharks on my bearded face. But so as to clear up any...ahem...misconceptions, let me be clear about what has happened. I do in fact have a job that allows me to work from home. And yes, it is a job doing some writing, amongst other things. That is all I will say on that count, and a pox on others who reveal any further information here (you know who you are). Yes, I do have the Superman pajamas; I have the pair with the cape on the back and the enclosed feet with the padding on the bottom. They really enhance my ability to play hotel hockey. Yes, I have the bunny slippers. What respectable heterosexual male doesn't? And yes, sadly yes, I did shave my playoff beard last week and started growing it again. But I must be clear that this is where Sacamano's true claims end. I do have a boss, I do have to leave my house to meet him/her, and I do have to look presentable. The part about Scholars is mostly a lie, and Sac shouldn't talk. I specifically remember an email where he told me that he was surprised we had never met before, considering how much time he spent there.

But back to the beard. I did shave it last Friday. In fact, I did it right before reading Sac's post on the playoff beard. Reading the post when I returned from my meeting, I became very concerned. Tyler had asked the question about whether it was okay to shave the beard for job purposes. Sacamano said no except in the case of job interviews. Others confirmed this, and I can see their point. I am pretty much positive--in hindsight mind you--that my boss would have just laughed at me, and no damage would have been done. Like I said, though, this is all in hindsight. I just woke up and did what I normally do before work: cleaned myself up.

Anyways, I started re-growing the beard immediately, now with zero intention of shaving it for any reason. Sacamano knew this, and nothing was said. My body felt good. My mind felt great. I entered Game 1 between the Oilers and Sharks totally confident, ready to go. We lost Game 1, but I still felt good. We lost Game 2. I felt shitty, but it certainly wasn't my fault. And I wasn't the only one feeling bleak.

By Tuesday morning, that had all changed. I woke up with a curious sense of dread, and by mid-afternoon I had located its source: had my 2nd beard actually become an inadvertent Beard of Shame, an Anti-Beard to end all Anti-Beards? By shaving my beard, and then starting to grow it all over again, had I caused a massive disturbance in the Oiler karma force? Did my actions rip a fabric in the spacetime continuum, creating a wormhole through which the Sharks could travel to the future, see how the Oilers were going to play, then return for the victory? Exactly what, if anything, had I done?

I emailed Sacamano immediately, looking for not only support but also advice. Instead, dude jumped on me like a vampire in a blood clinic. All of a sudden it's all my fault. I say, it can't be. I say, it must be a whole bunch of us. He agrees, and tells me he is going to post on it. So I look at BoA a few hours later, and that bugger still blamed it all on me! Well, not entirely, but people attacked me with the ferocity of a Great White in the comments section. Does anyone blame Sac for actually being a Calgary boy who jumped ship to the Oilers 8 years ago? No. Does anyone blame the thousands of Flames and Canucks fans likely cheering for the Oilers, totally messing up our mojo? No. Does anyone blame Cosh for not writing any post-game analysis on this series, despite the fact that he did it for every game against Detroit? No. Does anyone blame my woman for draining the Orbs of Power? No. What about the Covered in Oil boys, and their propensity for exuberant flesh peddling?

Nope. It's all on Grabia. Well, fine. The beard is gone. Shaved it tonight, right after I read the damning post. I refused to shave my legs, as Mirtle and Mrs. Sac suggested (btw, Mrs. Sac, my girlfriend wanted you to know she thought it was a great idea, too). But I may have shaved "other regions"; feel free to call me for a peek.

So here it is, in pictures, the shaving of the Anti-Beard. May it lead to a glorious Oiler victory Wednesday evening. If it doesn't, someone else has to pick up the blame.

My work station.

My dubious personage.

Me as imagined by Sacamano. The Superman pajamas and bunny slippers were in the wash with my panties, but the booze and cigarettes were readily available.

Saying hello to my favourite Canadian conservative freelance reporter.

Not bad for a few days growth.

What I would have looked like in a week if I hadn't shaved.

Let the good times roll.

I thought about keeping the Todd Harvey stache, but felt I needed to go all the way.

Nice n' Smoove.

All cleaned up, wearing the "I Love Nerds" hat that I wore during game six against Detroit, as well as my Hartford Whalers jersey. See? I am even willing to jinx my second favorite team if it will help the Oilers.

I never wear my Oilers jersey during games, by the way. Baaaad luck with that.

Looking at this picture, I realized that if Prime Minister Stephen Harper ever needs a portly body double, I'm his man. It's all in the eyes.


At 3:48 AM, Blogger theDrizzler said...

I shaved my round one beard for work purposes as
well. I didn't think it would hurt. I've regretted it
for a week. And I'm my own boss. What was I thinking?
I wasn't. Sorry Oilers. So Andy, you're not alone in
the blame game.

p.s. Remember when you didn't smoke or drink? I think
that was you. The last 8 years have been a little
hazy. What was I talking about?

At 6:11 AM, Blogger sacamano said...

Spectacular post. Simply spectacular. If that doesn't throw off the chains I don't know what will.

At 6:16 AM, Anonymous Colby Cosh said...

"Canadian conservative freelance reporter." Congratulations, you went two-for-four. Now if only you could get Chone Figgins to do the same thing a little more often.

At 6:34 AM, Blogger Black Dog Hates Skunks said...

Great post Andy - what a riot!

You've done your part. Now its all up to the Oilers - no excuses!

At 11:43 AM, Blogger Andy Grabia said...

I knew that would bug you, Cosh!

At 11:54 AM, Blogger Andy Grabia said...

My God, I rushed that thing so much I made about three or four errors in it. Horrible. All fixed now (I think), but how embarrassing!

Let's Go Oilers!!!!!!

At 12:41 PM, Blogger mudcrutch79 said...

Awesome post Andy, particularly the part where you're giving Cosh the finger. (I would have written fingering Cosh, but in light of his use of the term during the draft, I was worried about causing confusion.)

At 12:48 PM, Blogger Andy Grabia said...

Agreed. Shudder.

At 1:41 PM, Anonymous lowetide said...

Jesus, Blaine Stoughton looks like he could still play.

At 2:56 PM, Blogger Andy Grabia said...

Hell ya! I haven't felt this good since I played in Flin Flon.

At 9:55 PM, Blogger d-lee said...

Dude, since I'm a Canes fan, I gotta tell you to keep rocking the Whalers sweater!

I thought about shaving my round one beard after we got trounced in games one and two by the Habs. I kept the whiskers, and the payoff has been sweet so far.

At 10:00 PM, Blogger Andy Grabia said...

Alright! Another Canes/Whalers fan!!!

I am wearing my hat and my jersey, and it only seems to be helping the Canes. I take no responsibility for how shitty the Oilers are playing tonight. This one is all on them.


Post a Comment

<< Home