FROM THE HIP: The beard is making a comeback

- Have you noticed how many men are wearing beards these days? The trend seems to be especially growing among Millennials. For proof, no need to go further than their favorite night spot to see what I mean. It's part of the never ending meandering social trends that have woven their way into our world's fabric and history.

A little research, where else, in the Old Farmers Almanac shows that beards originally were just a way of life for prehistoric man. Through time they became symbols of region, religion and often times soldiers wore them because they didn't have time to shave. It wasn't until 30,000 B.C. that someone had the idea of removing facial hair with a clam shell using it like a tweezers (ouch!), then eventually sharpening the edge to use it like a blade. By 3,000 B.C. copper razors were introduced in India and Egypt. But when the Ancient Greeks ruled 800 BC to 600 AD beards were almost a must as a sign of masculinity and knowledge. (Just look at all of those old statues!)

The steel blade arrived around 1800, which might explain why our first 15 U.S. Presidents were beardless. In 1895, a man named King Gillette (no relation to the founder of the wonderful Gillette Children's Hospital) out of Fond Du Lac, Wisconsin invented the disposable razor, making a daily shave the norm for most men.

So there you have it - a crash course on beards and as they say these days "man-scaping." I tell you all of this as I undertake a task that is symbolic and remove the "scruff" from my face. About a year ago, I was wearing a beard for a meeting in our newsroom. In a matter of seconds, my boss pointed at the beard then gave me the cut sign. Message delivered and I did as told. The beard was gone minutes later.

So, here we are again. Over six weeks at home recovering from a broken hip, but the end is near. I'm set to return to Fox 9 Sunday, March 26 - finally!  And the beard I've let grow all this time must go. But not completely until Sunday morning. My wife keeps telling me how she likes guys with goatees and like listening to my bosses, I'm just doing what I'm told!

See you all soon!

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