One time? In band camp? There was back hair? Seriously, though, this article starts with a “one time, in band camp” story.
It was summer in Bowling Green, Kentucky—that place where someone was dumb enough to build the National Corvette Museum on top of a sinkhole, dooming it to a hilariously subterranean fate. I was a sophomore at Western Kentucky University, whose mascot is literally a giant, spastic, apparently acid-tripping red blob. At the moment, I was a music education major. I had less than no desire to teach music in public schools, but I thought the education degree would give me something to fall back on. I later decided I’d rather fall back on broken glass and switched to performance.
Anyway, as an education major, two semesters of marching band were mandatory. In the Bible Belt, marching band is huge. It is believed that Jesus Christ himself played center snare in heaven’s drumline (and I wouldn’t dare imply that he didn’t.) It’s that serious there.
In southern Kentucky, band camp is balmy business, and shirts are only for prudes, masochists, and—to the chagrin of many an undergraduate—females. A certain trumpet player (we’ll call him “Kevin,” since that’s his name) had the sort of body hair that brought to mind Grendel or tales of the yeti. From half a football field away, a shirtless Kevin appeared to be wearing a bulletproof vest.
Up close, the fur forest appeared to be a black sweater vest. Skin was simply not visible at all. I assume that he did indeed have torso skin, but I have no real proof.
I was reminded of Kevin a few weeks ago at the pool, where I saw a dude whose back looked straight-up like Walt Whitman. It was sublime.
The advantages of having three or four pounds of body weight accounted for by hair are obvious.
On average, these people save big on heating bills. You can only wear so much clothing. That added layer can be invaluable protection against the elements. Well, I don’t know about fire. That’s an element that it might not protect against. Or uranium.
The agony of having a cat climb up your back is eliminated. A hirsute man is a veritable scratching post.
The extra layer also provides an added defense, like armor. Had our lord Jesus Christ been as pilose as my friend Kevin, that jerk of a Centurion who stabbed him in the side would of been thwarted (and who does that anyway? Who stabs a dude in the side when he’s being tortured to death? Not me!). He would have retracted Longinus in awe, saying “Well played, Yeshua. You hairy badass.”
And best of all, fistfuls of man fur make better actual love handles than actual love handles, which are hard to really grab in the moment—particularly when they’re sweaty. It’s like trying to hang on to a greased-up inner tube. Am I right?
So just how does one grow back hair? I hoped you’d never ask!
We both wish that I were joking, but Rogaine can be used to grow hair anywhere on the body. Kids or significant other masturbating? Rogaine on the palms! Cold feet? Rogaine on the soles! Embarrassingly barren back? Yessirreebub, slather it on.
A blog that I wish I were funny enough to have made up but is totally real, becomingabear.blogspot.com, details one man’s journey from being a man with some money and less back hair than desired to being a man with some back hair and less money than desired. There’s your daily dose of unexpected anecdotal evidence.
The best way to apply Rogaine to your back involves a Slip ‘n’ Slide or at least a garbage bag or something to writhe upon oilily. There are other methods, but they aren’t as much fun.
Be Southern Italian, Albanian, Macedonian, Greek, Cypriot, Georgian, or Armenian
If you’re currently busy being one of these ethnicities, congratulations, ya nailed it! It’s easy for you to lose your keys when you are naked, and finding them again requires an X-ray machine.
“Back Hair to the Future”
If you have failed completely to be even one of these ethnicities, you can try the “Back Hair to the Future” method. It involves your discovery and achievement of time travel as well as taking calculated risks such as flirting with irreparably mangling the spacetime continuum or accidentally skipping breakfast. Use with caution.
Raise your vibration, or whatever
I realize that some people actually try to do this for spiritual or psychological reasons or just because they are maladjusted. (I, too, am maladjusted and mean no offense to other maladjusted people.) But techniques employed in the Vajrayana Buddhist tradition specifically have been measured by scientists to raise the body temperature by as much as 8.3 degrees Celsius.
Miranda Shaw explains that “Most people simply allow the energy to churn in a cauldron of chaotic thoughts and emotions or dissipate the energy in a superficial pursuit of pleasure, but a yogi or yogini consciously accumulates and then directs it for specified purposes.”
So grow some back hair with it, ya dummy!
Take it from your scalp
Let’s face it: bald dudes are sexy! From Seal to Patrick Stewart, there’s just something about the thought, “Hey, I can see the skin that’s keeping your brain from getting rained on,” that drives a woman wild and makes a man question his own sexuality. I know firsthand how hard to understand—but impossible to deny—the conflicting emotions that arise are every time Jean Luc Picard shouts, “Make it so!” I don’t think that “Star Trek: The Next Generation” ever showed the captain’s bare back, but one can imagine how lupine it must be.
If you have accumulated unsightly head hair, there’s no better use for it than transplanting it to your back where it will have both greater aesthetic as well as utilitarian impact. While the American Hair Loss Association has the system totally backwards, they do explain the cosmetic benefits of grafting certain hair types: “Fine hair has less bulb and can give a very natural look but less coverage than coarser hair. Wavy and curly hair lends itself to good visual results in transplantation because a single wavy or curly hair curls on itself. …”
Just imagine: a full back of gorgeous, luxuriant, wavy hair!
At this point, you’ve realized that I’ve never grown anything
A week and a half ago, you may have seen my piece “How to grow mold” in the place of our normal Dixie Gardening Sunday Edition slot. This was to fill a void left by the departure of Charlotte West, our former gardening writer as she has gone on to pursue other aspirations.
Well, someone had to do something. Opinion editor and resident rabble rouser Dallas Hyland went surfing, again. News editor and resident pretty boy Don Gilman went rock climbing, again. And managing editor and resident babysitter Paul Dail yelled “Not it!” before I could. I’ve done my best to fill Charlotte’s clogs, for which I’ve been demoted once again by the wily warlock of words himself, Josh Warburton—this time to “staff imbecile.”
Fortunately, Angela Laub has taken this burden off my relatively hairless back (I’m German-Irish) and has begun to write Dixie Gardening articles for us, starting this past Sunday.
This is wonderful news, as I was preparing to write a Dixie Gardening article on “How to Grow Old.” Come on, y’all. That doesn’t even make sense.
However, The Independent—perhaps traumatized by my immaturity—remains open to submissions from southern Utah contributors so long as they are not me. While Laub’s piece on growing green beans is excellent, I’ve set the bar as low as it can go.