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Ode to my Beard: The Scarlet Beast

Lets be frank here. Beards are awesome. That is a fact. It is not disputed by anyone with any credibility on anything.

I’d always wanted a beard. The hard part was commitment. In my early days it would grow patchy and haphazard, and, as someone who actually cared what people thought of me, I didn’t want to look like a testosterone-deprived, cant-grow-a-full-beard pussy. So I shaved. I shaved daily, and I was content to live a life without awesomeness.

But as I got fatter and, lets be honest, more depressed, I started to not give two shits about my spotty beard, pretty looks, or what others thought. I finally committed. I waited, hell I dared my boss to call me out for my coming to work looking like drunken hobo. He didn’t, and after an initial month or so of scratchiness and awkward looks it started to fill in.

I gave myself an air five and dropped my application for my man-card in the mail. I was on the path to awesome.

It started to get bushy, and I contemplated a shave, but at that point I decided to double down on my awesomeness and make a pledge. For what is a man who has not made a pointless pledge about his facial hair? I would not shave until I weighed under 300 lbs. A week into being vegan, this was no simple challenge. I started this journey at 371 pounds.

I waited. The beard grew.

People started calling me sir. Strangers would approach me in stores. I no longer needed a scarf to stay warm in the winter. Or a coat. Or shoes. I scowled at children, and they ran away wide-eyed in terror. In short, I was a bad-ass.

Now, four months into going vegan, it is starting to get out of control. I still have another 30 pounds to go. It is my scarlet beard, a mark for the everyone to know I have not hit my goals. Branded in shame, I now wear it in pride. It is a badge of honor.

Except summer is coming. It’s going to be hot. So it’s time to kick it into overdrive and drop these pounds. I will miss you good friend. You collected my dribbles of soup and crumbs of toast and gave me something to twist as I plotted my schemes.  You were my friend who kept me warm on lonely nights.  Now, good friend, it is time to put you on notice.

The countdown has begun. In thirty pounds we must part.

And it will be a sad day.


  1. I’m too lazy to do the research, but as you part with your beloved scarlet beast, you might check out what some ancient philosophers and theologians have said about beards. I remember reading one who wrote, essentially, if you don’t have a beard you must not have any gonads either.

    • “To shave the beard is a sin that the blood of all the martyrs cannot cleanse. It is to deface the image of man created by God.”
      -Ivan IV known as Ivan theTerrible

  2. I know this post is about beards, but its also about weight loss sooooo, here’s a link you might like about losing weight on a plant based diet. When I read it I thought about you.

    • Quite surprised to see eating packs Oreos and bowls of sugary cereal isn’t on their weight loss list. Maybe that’s what I’m doing wrong. 😉

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