Tuesday 23 December 2014

Shaving : Manliness Decoded

Writing in response to acknowledgement of the tag for #WillYouShave activity by one of my blogger friend Prerana Ranjan in her post here.

I am not the kind who gets all fuzzy over personality or looks of others whom I'm not concerned with. But yes, I'm extremely definite n distinct when it comes to my loved ones. This has been in my genes probably that no one in my family compromises in groomed looks. Specially my dad used to point out it takes lifelong practice to hone your manly skills. As a small child, I never got to understand what he exactly wanted to convey, but now as a wifey to my man I better learnt that manliness is not only being particular about your outfits & accessories, but needs a careful n conscious effort to look presentable.

Here is one of the memorable incidents from the diary of the first man in my life i.e. my dad, that speaks aloud about impact of this male ritual of DAILY SHAVING at different times and places ...

Dad enjoys a professional career of Law practitioner of great repute since years and is a style icon to most colleagues and youngsters. For all of us family members, there is nothing new or unusual when we see him getting up timely even on holidays and trimming his facial hair with same fervor every morning.

Nobody ever thought of asking him whether there is any special reason to shave off his beard everyday without a miss.  It was when dad's distant cousin visited us from Canada and stayed with us for few days. He observed dad being too particular in his shaving routine and could not resist giving my dad a compliment for the same saying "Bhai Sahab, Itne saalon me bhi aapki aadat nahi badli, ab to umar ho gayi hai. Kya fark padta hai agar ek din shave nahi ki..." ;)

Uncle's statement had triggered an involuntary reaction from dad, when he responded with a soul-stirring story of his life. Everyone knew dad had been a scholar students throughout his study time. Inspite of cash crunch that the family was going through as well as other hardships (like being eldest son responsible for managing whole family due to my grandpa's physical disability to walk) at home, he kept on bringing laurels year by year making his parents feel pride. The courageous boy (my dad) had the iron determination to excel in studies so as to be capable of earning a comfortable yet reputed lifestyle for himself and family. When he got himself enrolled for LLB in Kurukshetra University, he owned no better means to commute to the college than to walk for a distance of many kilometres early morning and reach college. He very well earned his Law degree and started practicing in year 1976 at Session Courts.

More interested for taking his profession graph upwards, dad attempted for judicial services exam when he was well settled in the arena. There were few other bright guys
who were competing for selection in Judiciary Exams. The chances of a member for the judiciary making his way all the way up the ladder were rather remote. But the competitive spirit & in-depth knowledge helped dad sail through the tough competition in the written exam with flying colors. Half the battle was already won and now the formal interview was the last step to take for significantly hasten the promotional prospects. Dad was damn confident to hit the hammer on the nail as he occupied his seat in front of the panel all dressed up like a gentleman for the final interview. One of the panelists whispered something in the ear of co-panelist giving a dirty look to dad as he was fluently answering the questionnaire & then interrupted him in between saying "Mr. Bindlish, we are elated with your performance n self-confidence, but the harsh reality is that we would like to appoint a smooth chinned man for this post who looks a little more sophisticated..."

Something inside dad's heart was shattered forever :( He had never imagined that the facial hair that he flaunted as a sign of manliness was the only reason of his unrealized dreams... Those moments were irreversible, but he had committed to himself to keep his face clean-shaven n silky smooth always blended together in true perfection. All of us were heartbroken by dad's loss & the story created a saddened atmosphere that moment. But dad concluded by saying now my face feels completely chic without a puff of furry love at the bottom and I have grown to appreciate my new found chin liberation since that day.  Its never too late to adapt to new things in our lives to be happier n smarter in life ;) 

This post is a part of #WillYouShave activity at BlogAdda in association with Gillette

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