Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Mustache and beard Spotting

My mustache obsession

Over the years I have been rather fond of growing facial topiary. Sometimes I can pull it off and other times I have made a mistake and grown something that makes me look sinister.

My university graduation photo with me sporting a D’Artagnan style tash and beard is one such example.

What has obsessed me is spotting tashes. Over the years this has become a game between me and my friends. We try and out spot each other and it becomes very competitive.

It has even got to the stage where we will take a sneaky photograph of a mustachioed man and send it to one another.

Every year I wholeheartedly take part in Movember and raise money for prostate cancer awareness. We get together and form a band of tash sporting gents.

Sometimes I wish after November has come to an end that I had kept my mustache  I like the feel and the look especially if I trim to resemble and Errol Flynn-David Niven hybrid.

An American sporting the 'chopper' style mustache. Photo taken at the London Olympics and its is quite scary that he has 'kids' written on his t shirt! This is a favorite tash of wrestlers and murderers!
Every now and then you see a mustache so proud and magnificent that you need to take a photo. If you have had a few beers this becomes easier and you have the guts to go up and take the photo. If not you result to sneaky tactics.

If you are at a festival, event or party it become easier as you just saunter up and take the photograph. Inevitably they will smile and display their mustache in full glory.

You can however catch them off guard and the resulting photo can show a sneer or angry tash as I like to call it.

The tash spotting game was born on a trip to London one summer’s day and we noticed an abnormally high amount of facial hair. Therefore we tried to out spot each other. The normal scores for a day in the city would be around twenty to twenty five spots each.

This is however increased if you go to the continent. Portugal for example offers the mustache spotters a cornucopia of bristles to look out for. There are long droopy mustache  Fu Manchu tashes, neat bristles and the ultimate Hulk Hogan mustache.

Europeans on the continent really know how to pull a mustache off and wear it with pride no matter what the weather or their attire.
This is a typical Spanish mustache. Photo taken in 2011 in Pamlona. It is worn with pride and will undoubtedly catch many food morsels. Just look how happy he is, this tash has made his life complete.

They also like to pose for a photo more often than not, something their British counter parts get a little snotty about it.

Sometimes the best photo can be a sneaky one taken when the tash wearer is caught off guard; it will reveal their true personality.

The game tash spotting is now down to a fine art. You have to call it before the person or persons you are playing spots the mustache  They can however object. For example a shadow at a long distance can be misleading and thus you make a false accusation. Therefore you have to prove that it was a tash. This can be by taking a photo or running up to check if they are a wearer or they are clean.

After a few beers the game becomes quite competitive and people will race up to look into an oncoming butchers shop window for example or other places that tashes like to congregate.

Cab drivers, butchers, bus stops and cafes are the best places to spot a tash. They could be nestling down to breakfast or peeping over a folded newspaper.

Some beard owners do dress and act a little strange.
There are of course rules to this game. A mustache must be a mustache on its own, no beard and especially no tickler on the lower lip. It cannot attach to sideburns as that constitutes a beard and if it merges into a weeks’ worth of stubble that also constitutes as a beard.

Therefore you may think you have spotted an uber tash and when the tash wearer turns round to reveal a tickler you have forfeited that point and have let the tash spotting side down.

Beards are another favourite and are fortunately making a fashionable comeback. Although beard spotting is not as fun as mustache spotting it can be just as fruitful.

The chances of a tash wearer dressed in silly attire is not usually high. They are normally shirt wearers and have a purposeful gait about them.

To do the dance of the morris must you own a beard?
Beard owners on the other hand can be complete mental nut jobs. Some will let their face go back to nature and the rest of their body and attire will follow.

I would hazard a guess that six out of ten beard owners you would not want to leave alone with your children.

Certain hobbies are associated with beards: bee keeping, morris dancing, battlefield re-enactments and ferret keeping. I was lucky to stumble across a May Day celebration in Rochester, Kent. The entire city becomes swamped by beards and tashes galore.
It seemed that every other person had a tash and therefore the game was so hard to play.

So next time you go to London or pop to France or even have a jolly over to Spain. Keep an eye peeled for a tash and let the games begin!

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