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A Little Dab’ll Do Ya!

A Man Out of Time

What the blazes is this ‘hair gel’ of today? While at the local pharmacy, I realised that I was in need of replenishing my stock of pomade. Upon enquiring with the young maiden behind the counter, I found myself faced with a vacant stare of confusion.

After convincing her that this wasn’t an apple-flavoured beverage, I realised I would have to go by brand name. Listing the products ‘Brylcreem’ and ‘Dax Wax’, however, did not prove fruitful. Moreover, “stuff for hair” only resulted in a false nail fervently jabbed towards the remarkably small section for gentlemen’s grooming products.

Upon inspection, there was not a pomade in sight; rather I encountered a line of threatening and outlandish vulgar tubes entitled “extreme,” “shockwaves,” and my personal favourite, “blasting freeze.”  What the devil were these products designed for and, more frighteningly, what did they contain in for them to be designated such titles?

Even my beloved Brylcreem had lost its essence, tainted with words such as “Extreme” and “Stronghold.” Schwarzkopf appeared as a recommended choice by the retailers. This sounded awfully Prussian to me and I suspected Jerry subterfuge…

Eventually, I discovered that my cherished original Brylcreem had been concealed by the Kaiser-serving conspirators; a lowly pot stood defiantly behind the menacing products.

A mumbling young gentleman reached past me for a tube of what I believe was entitled “Super Hold Death Shock”.  It happened as if in a dream; his elocution had clearly been inhibited by some sort of Jerry trance. Cautiously avoiding his gaze lest the incantation be contagious through eye contact, I carefully studied his hair. A cold chill crept up my spine as I saw the scruffy, uncouth mass of hair that rose and fell like unkempt shrubbery. I could only conclude that he must be the victim of some dreadful accident.

Confused by my horror, the youth explained to me that this was actually the current fashion in personal grooming. How unsightly! To what end do the youth of today soil their appearance?  Today, the grimy, unclean mess or gravity-defying spiked shards or a mop reminiscent of that singing baby from the circus, Justine Bebo, are favoured.  Both are looks that entirely forego the sophistication of a cleanly combed mesh held in place by smooth pomades.  This generation today seems obsessed with appearing ‘cool’ at all costs, even if it means being reminiscent of a Tex Avery cartoon after an intimate encounter with an electric socket.

Once upon a time a man was considered uncouth should he not look after his mane with sunshine reflecting creams. The sharp, defined parting compliments a well-tailored suit and demands the utmost respect. The eternal mark of a gentleman is surely not untidiness but how masculine and suave one appears, is that not so?.

Later that evening, I consulted the marvellous information super-highway (or the interwebs as my grandchildren seem to call it) on my space-age typewriter. To my dismay, the availability of refined hair dressings has declined dramatically since my day. All that remains is a proud, albeit minor, resistance movement based in… Germany!?

How I wrong about those jolly Jerries! How could I have even suspected them in the first place? A truly marvellous race of men! I even acquired my beloved ‘Sweet Georgia Brown Hair Dressing Pomade’ from these brave troopers. To the men of overrated cars and sausage, I salute you!

Charles-Philippe Bowles

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One Comment
  • Jonesy
    21 January 2013 at 13:14
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    It’s strange how one can only read this in your voice. Regarding this matter, I have my preferences on the good ol’ Royal Crown pomade.

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