by Jeanne Adams
Meet Bobby Ginepri, tennis star.
Is this about tennis? HECK No.
The reason he's the top feature today is that he's a sexy man with hair on his chest. Nothing airbrushed out.
Ahhhhh, a Real Man. Grins.
And so, the debate begins. Bwah-ha-ha-ha!
I go out with girlfriends and the talk eventually - or immediately - turns to our favorite topic: MEN. The other day some friends and I got into a rather wild, heated (sounds fun, right?) discussion of why all the cover models and "Sex Sells" type of photos are of men with no hair on their chests when I can bet that most real heroes, real, sexy men and, for that matter, real firemen, unlike the one on the right here, DON'T shave their chests.
Now some women are quite fond of this look. Cover models with lots of disheveled hair on their heads, but with a strong, smooth hairless chest, and the requisite ripped pecs, biceps and, of course, abs.
Have to say, I can totally appreciate it. However, it isn't my favorite. I like men with chest hair. I like men who look like men. I like burly, working, lumberjack kind of men in pictures, in real life and on covers. Or even Pierce Brosnan (Pictured on his boat here...oh, please, let's sail away!) who, tho' not burly, is certainly furry.
I like Tom Selleck who never made any secret of the fact that he was hirsute. I like the deep gravelly voice of Sam Elliott and I adore his physique as well, fur included.
Maybe I just like werewolves.
I know I like deep-voiced country singer Josh Turner and he's pretty darn furry too. Maybe there's a connection between the deep voice and the amount of chest hair? Hmmmm....I wonder if I could get a government grant to study that? Grins.
I even liked the late great Charlton Heston with his bare-chested, well-furred shot as Moses or in Planet of the Apes. Woo-hoo, Charlton! Of course, as I've mentioned before, I liked him better as a Prince of Egypt rather than Moses, the leader of the Israelites, as I'm not fond of long scraggly beards!
Which brings me to another point. What is it about men with beards? In the last few years, the goatee, the soul patch, the chin strip, balbo and the mustache have made a comeback. For years it was allllll about the clean shaven thing. (And pretty much still is when it comes to cover models.) Or that goofy looking "I forgot to shave" three day growth of beard thing.
That may look okay on Dr. McDreamy, but not on many others.
I mean, I sort of get this unshaven, messy look if you're thinking "Wow, we spent three days in the Bahamas together and he didn't shave because we spent the whole time in bed..." sort of a deal.
However anything short of a real, soft, full beard equals beard burn to me, ladies.
What about you? It may be okay for a photo, but seriously, do you really want to get all smoochy with a couple day's growth of beard?
I'm thinking going to work the next day would be interesting...
"Oh, yeah, those red marks? Well, um...uh..."
If you admit to beard burn or worse yet, collar marks, either way you're gonna get razzed. Or fired, depending on where you work.
And heaven forbid you should put "Hubba-hubba beard burn" up on your Facebook page.
Fired. Fer shure.
Now, most ball players, stars and celebrities sport some kind of facial hair - at least between games or movies appearances. I can't say I'm fond of the baseball players penchant for dying them a weird color to contrast with their uniforms, but it is an interesting look. It's cool, I just wouldn't date a guy who wore it that way. Not my thing, but somebody must really like it, right? Or am I wrong? Do these guys get dates with a blue or red or pink patch of fuzz on their chins?
One of my girlfriends posited that the trend started with Mens Fitness and other such magazines who took their start, if you will, from body building. In body building its all about the muscles, so they don't want that pesky hair in the way.
Shave! Depilitate! (OUCH!)
And then there's the swimmers, of course, who want nothing, not one little hair, to ruin their aquadynamics and slow them down in the water. Shave! Depilitate!
(May I repeat...OUCH!)
So then Real Men, who actually DO read fashion magazines - what are Men's Fitness, GQ, and so on if not fashion mags? - decided that the only way to be cool, and be sexy and attract the hot chicks was to be smooth skinned and slick-chested.
NOT that these men in their nice fitting jeans aren't gorgeous, but really... do you want to go out with a guy who spent more time in the salon getting waxed than you did? Or whose idea of fun is a good shave down?
Obviously, the delicious Hugh Jackman, pictured golfing in his bath towel (I didn't ask, not sure I want to know) didn't go for the body shave....or the face shave for that matter!
Several years ago, Dianne Duane wrote a book in the Star Trek series in which Commander Troi took Commander Riker home with her. It's rather uninhibited on her planet, according to Troi, and weddings take place in the nude. Commander Riker sported quite the serious rug of chest hair and when they went to a wedding, Troi's relatives were intrigued. What was all that hair good for, they asked.
I absolutely laughed out loud. I remember this quite well because I was reading in the doctor's office and the receptionist opened the sliding glass thing which separated her from the mere patients, in order to see what or who was making all that noise and disturbing her game of computer solitaire. I ignored her and kept laughing.
(Made everyone else in the waiting room smile, so there, receptionist!)
So, traction or no traction? Is chest hair for you?
Do you like your men strong, powerful and furry like English Rugby star Ben Cohen on the right? (Great pic of him with one of his twin daughters, isn't it?)
Or do you like that built, slick, smooth and sexy look like my hunky CSI Las Vegas Nick over on the left?
Mustache and beard or cleeeeeaaaaan shaven?
To dye that beard a color or not?
Inquiring minds want to know...