Tall Matt's Travels

Matt - Thu Mar 29, 2007 @ 07:46AM
Comments: 14

 So I thought it would be an interesting experiment to let the beard grow out on the trip.  I've never really done it before.  I've had the occasional goatee, and am pretty much in a constant unshaven state, but I've never let nature completely take over.  Much to my surprise, the beard has been a steady point of discussion via the site and email. Not everyone is a big fan of the facial hair.  However, I didn't really expect it to be such a polarizing factor.

The emails have ranged from asking me to grow it out Forrest Gump style, to offers of sending me a razor wherever I may be. 

 To be honest, I didn't know if I'd like it.  I let it go and stayed with it.  For a while, I thought it was looking ok.  This was perhaps, a bit of a delusion.  The truth of the matter is, it doesn't look very good.  On top of that it's a pain in the ass. Sure, it's nice to not have to shave - but I really wasn't shaving all that much before.  And before, I wouldn't get soup and crap in my moustache. That sucks by the way. 

The kicker for me was actually meeting a guy on the trip to Antarctica. As I was awaiting the bus on day one, a guy came up to me whose appearance gave me pause.  He was about 6-5 or 6-6, and of fair skin as well.  To top it off, he had reddish hair and a big bushy red beard. I was taken aback.

Throughout the trip, he and I were constantly confused for one another.  Now, believe me, this has never happened.  I am rarely confused for anyone else, the height being the obvious differentiator if nothing else. 

 I had to have someone take a picture of us both - I had to see us together. When I did, I knew the beard had to go.  It simply had to.  James if you're reading this - keep yours.  Keep it going as long as you can, man.  I for one, cannot do it anymore.  It simply looks ridiculous on me. I'm through deluding myself. I'm glad I had one for Antarctica.  It almost seemed a necessity for that trip. 

So sleep soundly all you beard-haters, it´s gone.  I actually mowed it the afternoon I got back to the hostel in Ushuaia.  I still haven't cut my hair, but the beard is history.  Long live the stubble.

Comments: 14


1. Karen   |   Mon Apr 09, 2007 @ 08:51AM

I think you did the right thing. The beard was great for the first leg of your journey. Starting fresh before you make your way to the next continent is a good idea. Plus, Africa is a lot warmer than the Antarctic.

2. Umaga   |   Mon Apr 09, 2007 @ 01:46PM

Dude, shave your head too. Maybe grow the beard back, but shave the head. Then wear a kilt. Perfect!

3. Vicki (not the penguin one)   |   Mon Apr 09, 2007 @ 05:41PM

You look so much better! And thinner! The beard made your cheeks look puffy :-)

4. Vicki (the PENGUIN one)   |   Mon Apr 09, 2007 @ 05:42PM

If only I had known what you looked like without that beard, things could have been so magical on our little island adventure ...

5. ryan r.   |   Mon Apr 09, 2007 @ 07:34PM

beards of the non-lumberjack variety = overrated
handlebar mustaches of the pitcher variety = underrated

you chose wisely.

next up - a mohawk possibly?

6. Doug   |   Tue Apr 10, 2007 @ 02:33PM

No more protective powers for you. I wish against, yet almost expect a broken bone in the near future. You should have braided it into cornrows and got dark sunglassess and taken on a K-Fed meets Conan O'Brien appearance. If you were playing doom you'd be toast.

7. Jennifer   |   Tue Apr 10, 2007 @ 05:00PM

Good move. You are too handsome to keep that beard up. Grizzly Adams went out a long time ago. I have to write in good vibes after the broken bone remark............you will be fine. The powers of Samson be with you.

8. Stacey B   |   Tue Apr 10, 2007 @ 06:55PM

Ah, yes, much better. Ian has learned to say "Tall Matt" when our wonderful post cards arrive, and I'm quite sure he makes no connection between bearded Matt and the nice tall guy who visited us for pizza from time to time. Carry on!

9. Erica Wells   |   Wed Apr 11, 2007 @ 01:30PM

Damn, you should have sported the beard - you looked like a true Anartican (is that even a word?). Hehe... It would have been so sweet to see it all braided during your time in Africa :)
Keep on truckin'...

10. Pablo Escobar   |   Wed Apr 11, 2007 @ 03:07PM

When I punch you in the jaw its gonna hurt twice as bad, just a little something to think about.....

11. Beavis   |   Wed Apr 11, 2007 @ 03:27PM

Don't you remember the B&B episode "Beard Boys"??

Butt-head: We're so smooth, we have beards on our hands
Butt-head: (blacked-out: got cut with a razor by Beavis) You asswipe!
Beavis: Whoa! You look really cool now. Damn you're smooth.

12. Andrew Allen  |  my website   |   Wed Apr 11, 2007 @ 08:22PM

Dude. You seriously need to bring it back. Rejoin the band of bearded brothers. We welcome you any time.

13. Renee'   |   Wed Apr 18, 2007 @ 08:47AM

Nothing beats the true honesty of a family member - good choice - very good choice! We love your stories and photos. Thank you for sharing! God bless! Renee'

14. AI   |   Thu Apr 19, 2007 @ 02:18PM

The beard gave you a don't F with me vibe that you will need on your travels. The last picture of your neatly shaven face tells me that besides breaking your leg soon, you will also be someones girlfriend in a foreign prison. Good luck with that

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