Blog 1399 – 07.19.2019
Brother Of The Brush
My dad, James Clifford White, turned forty-two in 1965. I turned fifteen that same year. Our home town, Chattanooga, Tennessee, celebrated its sesquicentennial that year and those who could and would were encouraged to grow a beard for the occasion and there was a judging contest with prizes awarded in different categories. I and my younger brother and our mother could not enter and so it was up to dad to uphold the family honor. And he did admirably, even joining The Brother Of The Brush club and wearing the pin proudly. Mom, never very happy with most anything that my daddy said or did pointed out that the gray in his beard made him look like a possum without the “O, Boy.” Dad kept growing it not dissuaded. My brother and I thought his beard was cool.
Though I could not join the club then I have at various times since throughout my life grown a beard with varied results. One of my earliest successes was today’s picture taken with my handsome brother Robert, his lovely wife at the time, LeeAnn, my lovely niece Lauren before her “coming out” party, my beardless dad, and Lauren’s soon to be uncle, red-bearded Dave. The Davidson Scot heritage was really shining through that day.
Some years later I grew a beard for my daughter Emily one Christmas, she actually got nicer wrapper presents too, but again the Scot came out in the red tint of my beard which even made my hair look red as well.
Most of the beards that I have grown have come in looking a darker blonde like the hair on the top of my head. Dad called it “dirty blonde” as he had his since he was a tow-headed child. My last few beards like dad’s famous Brother Of The Brush one have had a few gray hairs.
I began about a week ago letting grow a beard for my Sexy 69th birthday, the day after Thanksgiving this year. It will be one that would I am sure if my mom were still living, get a “possum” comment and not an “Oh, my handsome boy.” But hey father’s and mother’s comments are not always right, kind, true nor are they arbiters of what we do or the beards we grew unless we let them be. I am sure that our folks in their day did things contrary to their own parents preferences and wishes, good for them. It is now our turn.
I plan to do a blog for my Birthday with a picture of a bearded me wearing a Santa hat to help launch the Christmas holiday season. Someday mine may be as white as Santa’s. I hope that I live long enough to make it so. After the birthday photo I will mostly then shave it off as I usually do, revealing my getting a bit older but still Baby face. I am it seems as my dad only a sometime Brother Of The Brush.
Your friend and fellow traveler,
Once again scratchy faced,