Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Beards. Why men have them. Why men NEED them.

I've just finished Giles Kristian's RAVEN, a book that's got loads of Vikings in it. More Vikings that a festival of Vikings during the Viking month of Viking, in Vikingland. It's so Viking even the women have beards.
Now, Vikings liked beards. Plaits too and small bones knotted within them as they brawled and sought out glory and weak-kneed churchmen.

It's the mark of a man, isn't it? At least publically and far less likely to get you arrested.

Then I thought (so rare nowadays). Templars. Beards. Spartans. Beards. Blackbeard. Beard. Santa. Beard. When you look at the stats, nine out of ten bad-asses had beards.

It says "hey, I'm not a woman." Infact, young samurai worried about such a issue used to grow moustaches so if they were ever decapitated (head-taking an honourable tradition in that culture) their killer wouldn't have his reputation blemished by anyone thinking he'd killed a girl. Now that's manly when you're working about your own severed head.

So I'm introducing a 'Beard Rating'. It's to establish how manly a thing is. Now we're not talking about just your DNA, but MANLY. Like don't do the washing up and 'hey, I've only worn this underwear five days and it's fine.' That sort of 'out-on-the-ledge' manliness which is so rare nowadays since we've given up existing in a hunter-gather society. And they say all progress is good.

So, Raven by Giles Kristian. Beardy down to your knees it's that manly. Sorry, MANLY.

Ironclad the movie, starring James Purefoy as a Knight Templar. Ankle-length beard. He's a Templar. 'Nuff said.

Conan the Barbarian. Hmm, maybe waist length beard. Yes, he lives, loves and slays, but there's a certain lack of true barbarism. Would the new Conan expect to hear the lamentation of his enemies women? Not so sure.

Conan the Barbarian as written by R.E Howard, knee-length beard.

So, next time you read something and feel the urge to tear off your shirt and run screaming in the woods wrestling trees, that's because that book has BEARD.

Till next time, folks.

Oh, in case you were wondering about Twilight? Clean-shaven.

1 comment:

Matt Bailey said...

I have a beard so when I'm beheaded they'll know which way up my head is supposed to be.