Did you know today was International Beard Day? Neither did I, until about 4 this afternoon. I was already working on a different comic, but as a supporter of the bearded lifestyle I felt compelled to make this contribution on this great holiday. Little known fact: your present host was once indentured to the United States Naval Forces, spending six years trying to blend in and keep a sense of humor without suffering disciplinary measures. When my time as a swabby for Uncle Sam came to an end, I swore I’d never shave again. And I haven’t!

At times, this thing on my face has taken on a life all its own (akin to William Shatner’s hair). When I meet people, I can come across as the consummate professional or as the crazy hilljack that stumbled into the fancy dinner. The beard determines which one it’s going to be. I once accidentally set my trimmer way too low and almost saw my baby face shining through. Those were dark times.

But it’s all better now. Here’s to the manly food preserver we call beards!