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Opinion >  Column

The Slice: Still waiting for Z.Z. Top to call

Richard Nixon was president when I started shaving.

But I never tried growing a beard, until now.

There are a couple of reasons I waited this long. For one thing, I never really admired that look. But perhaps more importantly, I suspected the results would be ridiculously sparse and scraggly.

I was right.

Nonetheless, out of curiosity, I am committed to my experiment. At least until Halloween.

But never having done this before, I have questions. Perhaps you can help. (I’ll send coveted reporter’s notebooks to the readers offering the best advice.)

1. Are those hideous trapped-food crumbs inevitable?

2. Will people eventually start to wonder if I am a Civil War general or polygamist?

3. I have zero interest in doing a lot of primping, trimming and bonsai-shaving. So what happens if you just leave everything but the moustache lip-line untended?

4. Does a beard say “I live in the Northwest” or does it say “I am starved for attention”?

5. Will a high percentage of gray whiskers reveal the fact that I am not 22?

6. What’s the best way to wash your face when you have one of these things — soap, shampoo or shaving cream?

7. Does stroking your chin whiskers make one look contemplative or simian?

8. Does a scruffy beard actually help keep your face warm when it’s 5 degrees out?

9. Will this create problems if a cop has occasion to study my pre-beard driver’s license photo?

10. Would it be a better idea to just get a Chia Pet?

11. Which stereotype about those sporting facial hair is most prevalent?

12. If I don’t shave it off, should I request a new mug shot?

Today’s Slice question: What is Spokane’s real-world economic indicator?

Write The Slice at P.O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210; call (509) 459-5470; fax (509) 459-5098; e-mail For previous Slice columns, see Growing up, Judy York’s dad reminded her of Fred Flintstone.

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