How to Be a Dad

How to Be a Dad

Shaving without Scaring the Kids

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Shaving without Scaring Your Kids

A major change to your hair, head or facial, is one of the fastest, most dramatic alterations to the way you look. Especially when you’ve had it a certain way for a long time and then toss a high-yield grenade of change at it. It can be very startling for others, especially your kids.

So, while Lucas was still a bun in Lizzie’s almost fully swollen oven, I decided I should take the opportunity and shave off my beard. Just ’cause. But I devised a plan. I would have Max and Cody shave my beard! “Why,” you ask? Ahhhh, read on…

Sweet Nightmares Are Made of This

 
Annie Lennox HairdoFor my mom, thanks to us kids, Annie Lennox’s hairdo (above) turned out to be a massive hairdon’t.

When I was about 10, my dad got me and my brother and sister together (Uh oh), saying that Mom had gotten her hair done and was very very unhappy with it. (What!?! You gotta be kiddin’ me! Crazy girls!) He cautioned us to be upbeat and not say anything mean. (What’re we pure evil?) Then Mom walked through the front door…

My jaw dropped and I probably said something unintentionally mean and not-upbeat. My sister screamed and started crying. Mom’s tears exploded from already red eyes and she ran to their bedroom, locking herself in. My Dad later explained that in a fit of spontaneity and love for the musical performer, she’d asked the hairdresser to turn her below-the-shoulders, 80’s cloud of curls into Annie Lennox’s cropped and fiery hairdo.

I was taught an early life lesson about mind-altering hair changes.

Operation: Weed Whacker

Voldemort Pinnocchio

When you shave your beard, the startled “whoa-ho!” looks of amazement or poorly veiled horror are amusing. These are the expressions I imagine the Deatheaters wore behind their masks, in the Harry Potter film when Voldemort was resurrected. I picture their wide eyes and hear them thinking, “Uhhhhh… Where the f##k is his nose?” But when it’s your kids, the question on their face seems to be, “Who the Hell are you, and what have you done with my dad!?!”

So, two years ago, I knew Cody and Max would be a little weirded out about it, so I had the idea it’d be less freaky for them if I had THEM do it! Plus, it would be fun, with a bonus chance of being oddly educational. Guy’ducational. I put tape on my sideburns so they didn’t get all abstract art on the sides of my head. Cody’s a lefty so he got the left, and Max got the right side.

Beard Shaving Montage
2009: Having fun with it, along the way we wound up with a sort of Wolverine meets Wyatt Earp.

Soooooo… I’m at it again!

That was two years ago. Now my beard is positively out of control, like a bear with a rapid-shedding condition wiped its ass on my face. I call it The Crazy Woodsman. I let it grow for Movember. You see, I was supposed to shave bare (my FACE) and grow out a mustache through November, like Charlie has, but I didn’t want to freak out the kids. Plus, I’m cheating. There’s no way I’m fighting fair when it comes to helping to fight Cancer, so now I’m going to lose the beard and save the stache. And this time, it’s for the good of Mankind!

Stay tuned for next week’s
MOVEMBER WRAP-UP &
CRAZY MUSTACHE REVEALS!

Andy's Crazy Woodsman Beard
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14 Comments

14 Responses to “Shaving without Scaring the Kids”

  1. the muskrat says:

    I can’t wait for next week’s craziness!

  2. Mark says:

    When we were kids my dad shaved off all his facial hair on day. My brother and I didn’t pay much mind to it, but my sister, who was 3 at the time, FREAKED OUT and cried every time she saw my dad the rest of that day. She had no idea who he was.

    • andy says:

      Yeah, it’s different for every kid, I think. I still got side-ways glances a lot when they thought I wasn’t looking for a good week. No tears though. Yay!

  3. Nicole in Portland says:

    My youngest sees his grandfather when he shaves once a year and refuses to acknowledge his existence. Last year, he screamed because he didn’t know who he was. I’m always taken aback when this happens. It takes a good 15 years off the man!

  4. Stephanie K. says:

    I remember when I was 11, my dad chose the absolute WORST time to shave his 15 year old mustache. He’d had it my entire life and longer. My parents were mid-separating (but still living together to keep us kids happy) and we (the kids) knew it. Lots of changes were happening. Then one morning, my 3 brothers and I are sitting in the car, waiting for my dad to come out and bring us to school. I look over at the front door and out walks this man I’ve never seen before. He looks over at me, smiles the creepiest smile I’ve ever seen and waves. I remember the terror that coursed through my body as I tried to figure out who the heck this guy is and why the Hell is he walking towards us smiling like that. I reached over to lock the car door as he approached the driver’s side and then…I saw who it was…my dad?!? With no mustache. Probably one of the scariest/cOnfusing moments of my life. Needless to say, all 4 of us told him, with our childish brutal honesty, that we hated it and he should grow it back. He never did. Still hasn’t, 11 years later – but I’m getting used to it ;-p

    For your kids sake, I appreciate how you handled it :-)

  5. Neil says:

    About two years ago I got the wild hair to grow a goatee. I’d never had facial hair at any point in my previous 40 years, so it was definitely a new thing for me. None of the kids (or my wife) ever really liked it, so after about a year of it, and by popular demand, I decided to shave it off one day.

    My daughter noticed right away and started rubbing my face, but my 7-year-old son, when he first saw me that day, just stood there with a blank expression. When I asked if he noticed anything different, he had several emotions pass over his little face – confusion, deep thought, and then elation. “You shrunk your face!” he says. I imagine he saw similar emotions pass over my face, before I said, “NO, I shaved.”

    The sad thing is there were some people (grown-ups) at work who had never known me without the goatee, and when they first saw me without it, they had similar reactions and comments as my son. Amazing.

    • andy says:

      “You shrunk your face!” is just about the raddest reaction I could imagine. Ha ha ha ha ha ha! Thank you for sharing that! (wiping a tear away)

      We’re having some fun with this, go to our Facebook Page and vote on the fate of my facial hair.

  6. Turtle-Dove says:

    My dad is a total hippie (in a wierd yet awsome viking biker way) he had hair down to his shoulders and a beard to his chest, one day he just randomly got my mom to give him a buzz cut and he shaved off his beard completly, just as he finished my younger brother walked out of the house and started to say “hey da-” only cut off, his eyes went wide, then he turned and bolted into the house slammed and locked the porch door, then the inner door, he then peeked out of the window with a terrified look on his face. My dad couldn’t stop laughing

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