Peak Cole

John Cole, blogger and influential man of letters (bolding mine).

This is an exhilarating time to be alive. All our efforts, all our resources, our consumption and tastes are maxing out in unison. Everything is hitting its peak.

After Australian researchers announced in April this year that the world had attained “peak beard”, a resource not supposed to be finite, other peaks followed. There were peak suburbs, peak hipsters, peak travel, peak narcissism and peak Beyoncé. There have been countless food peaks: banana, bacon, burgers, ramen, burrito and Freans (too many biscuits).

[…] The obvious question is: have we reached peak peak? Given the parodies (such as “Kittens Reaching Peak Cuteness” on the Daily Mash website), we must be climbing Mount Peak’s upper slopes, at the very least. In which case the interesting question is: where did this phrase come from – and why did it gain such traction?

[….] “Have we reached peak X?” belongs to a family of tropes known as snowclones – a templated phrase whose components offer tireless possibilities for adaptation and regeneration. Other examples are “X is the new Y”, “We are all X now” and “How I learned to stop X and love Y”. The authority on Snowclones is the Language Log blog run by celebrated linguists Geoffrey Pullum and Mark Liberman. […]

There is some good news, though. Liberman remembers the first time he noticed the phrase. It was in 2008, when the US writer John Cole blogged that “we may have hit and passed Peak Wingnut”, a derogatory term for rightwingers.

Cole’s post is nearly six years old, but can he recall what inspired the phrase? “I came up with ‘peak wingnut’ because I was shocked,” Cole says. “The Republicans seemed to get crazier and crazier. The source of it is [US blogger] Kevin Drum. At the Washington Monthly, one of the things he was always talking about was peak oil.”

John probably forgot to mention his big turn in the news because of work or something, but correcting a minor oversight like that is why he brought on co-bloggers in the first place. The potential impact that our little blog has had in the world makes me teary. Just remember to tell your kids one day that you were among roughly 107,000 unique visitors (-ish, we peak around elections) on the day when it happened.

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115 replies
  1. 1
    Trollhattan says:

    Uh-oh, here comes the “Wo-wah on Cole” led by Mitch McConnell and sponsored by Peabody Coal.

    Hilarious, nevertheless.

  2. 2
    Betty Cracker says:

    That is so fucking cool.

  3. 3
    Calouste says:

    I think this post means we have reached Peak Blogospheric Navel-Gazing.

  4. 4
    Mnemosyne says:

    I like that the writer seems to realize that there is no such thing as peak anything, which is why it’s turned into a joke.

  5. 5
    mai naem says:

    Six years ago and we still haven’t reached Peak Wingnut. I am thinking it doesn’t exist. Also too, its good news for John McCain. Speaking of Bomb Bomb is he related to the Doug McCauthur McCain guy – like maybe they’re long lost cousins or something? Also, did Bomb Bomb take up the Northwest Nitwit’s Ice Bucket Challenge. I think Cinders would love to dump a bucket of ice on Bomb Bomb’s head.

  6. 6

    Peak wingnut is like the Absolute Zero, we cannot reach peak wingnut only approach it.

  7. 7

    @mai naem: At his advanced age, ice bucket might prove fatal. Not such good news for McCain.

  8. 8
    efgoldman says:

    I’ve been off the grid for a couple days. Is there a DC/NOVA meetup happening while I’m here?

  9. 9
    Tim F. says:

    BTW, I brought up neither that John was a founding editor of RedState nor that my very next post that day has aged pretty well. Someone give me a goddamn cookie.

  10. 10
    Tommy says:

    Totally off topic …. but for the good of the order.

    I am going to get all “metrosexual” on yeah all.*

    I am 44. I mention that cause the razer I use, or the handle of it, is the one I first got when I started to shave at 17. That would make it almost three decades old. The razors have gone from two blades to I don’t know how many now. This strip or that. I don’t even know. You men know what I am talking about, replacement blades for these cost about $5/each and they don’t seem to last that long.

    Before I go on, I am anal about my appearance. I also like nice things. I don’t buy the generic blades. I buy expensive shaving cream (well gel actually). I use expensive after shave moisturizer. As I said am “metrosexual.”

    I don’t know how I got served this ad on Balloon Juice, but I did about two weeks ago. It was for Harry’s. All they sell is high-end shaving stuff for men. Now I’ve been served ads for other companies like this, I am guessing because I order some tailored cloths to my measurements online. Often their prices are so off the chart I can’t imagine paying them if I won the lottery.

    Harry’s had an intro package for $15. Razor. Three blades. Shaving cream. Free delivery.

    It came in a box, and this is the tech geek in me now, that when I opened the box made me think of Apple. The presentation was stunning. The top of the internal box said:

    Every man deserves

    Quality craftsmanship
    Simple design
    Modern convenience

    AND

    A great shave
    for a fair price

    harrys.com

    Just used it and the best shave I’ve ever had in my household and not at a barber.

    Oh and they have a plan you can sign-up for on a yearly basis, tell them how often you shave, and they provide you with everything you need.

    Pretty cool ….

    *I do not work for this company. I make no commission. Just became a raving fan :)!

  11. 11
    dmsilev says:

    Yes, yes, but I’ll really be impressed if “skull-fuck a kitten” enters the general lexicon.

  12. 12
    El Tiburon says:

    @mai naem:

    Six years ago and we still haven’t reached Peak Wingnut. I am thinking it doesn’t exist

    Wingnuts can never jump the shark.

    Wingnuttia outrage exists in some kind of M.C. Escher universe powered by a Rube-Goldberg echo chamber.

    They have the fever and the only cure is more cowbell that always is banging and banging regardless of the song being played.

  13. 13
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Calouste: No, I think that peak blogospheric naval gazing is probably as unobtainable as peak wingnut.

    Peak oil measures something tangible. Naval gazing and wingnut are intangible, I think. And wingnuttia is pretty much like Nigel Tufnel’s amp knob.

  14. 14
    Trollhattan says:

    @Tommy:
    For the record, my Gillette somethingorother appears to have an infinite number of blades, placing them in perpetual first place, blade-count division.

    Enjoy your buttery smooth visage!

  15. 15
    Trollhattan says:

    @dmsilev:
    When Jon Stewart uttered it I fell off the couch.

  16. 16
    Jebediah, RBG says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    I like that the writer seems to realize that there is no such thing as peak anything, which is why it’s turned into a joke.

    Well, there is peek a boo…

  17. 17
    Jebediah, RBG says:

    @Tommy:

    Yeah, I got tired of paying a zillion dollars for blades. I ordered a handle and four cartridges and I love it. Am going to try their shave goo next.

  18. 18
  19. 19
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Tim F.: /hands Tim a cookie

  20. 20
    cleek says:

    @Trollhattan:
    there’s little doubt the Daily Show writers read BJ.

    now if they would just mention pie filters or my Law, i can die a happy man.

  21. 21
    Tommy says:

    @Trollhattan: LOL. I will have to see how these blades work. I used to work in an office. Shaved everyday. Now I said I am anal about my appearance, but work out of my house and I don’t shave everyday. My beard doesn’t grow fast, but thick. If I shave every 3-4 days, well those Gillette razors don’t last very long.

    I’d never think I’d post what I posted above here, but I was so stunned when I got the package. I mean it was 15 bucks.

    BTW: Can anybody tell me why it is impossible to get a straight razor shave at an “old school” barbershop these days. Been years since I could get one.

  22. 22
    cleek says:

    @Tommy:

    Can anybody tell me why it is impossible to get a straight razor shave at an “old school” barbershop these days.

    i’ll guess…

    people saw Mississippi Burning and decided they didn’t want to end up like Brad Dourif’s character?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G1JX07MCCL4

  23. 23
    Trollhattan says:

    @dmsilev:
    Holy crap, that’s funny!

    Are you ready? Open your mouth, baby birds, cause Mama’s about to drop you one sweet, fat nightcrawler. Here she comes: Put another aloe strip on that fucker, too. That’s right. Five blades, two strips, and make the second one lather. You heard me—the second strip lathers. It’s a whole new way to think about shaving. Don’t question it. Don’t say a word. Just key the music, and call the chorus girls, because we’re on the edge—the razor’s edge—and I feel like dancing.

  24. 24
    MattF says:

    It’s peak peak.

  25. 25
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @dmsilev: The truly frightening thing is that shortly after this appeared in The Onion, sure enough, Gillette came out with a five blade razor.

  26. 26
    Trollhattan says:

    @cleek:
    Cleek’s Law will live onI believe!

  27. 27
    Tommy says:

    @Jebediah, RBG: From Harry’s?

    I already used Gel. I didn’t use Harry’s gel. I used what I use, which is Aveeno “Positively Smooth” shave gel. Love it. If you have not used gel before, well it doesn’t “foam” but it works. Hard to explain if you have not used it (really talking to others here). IMHO even thought it is more expensive, the cost factors out cause it is easier to use to your needs/amount. A dab the size of my pinky finger nail is enough for half of my face.

  28. 28
    Baud says:

    As long as folks don’t read the comments, it’s all cool.

  29. 29
    Violet says:

    Next stop the OED.

  30. 30
    NCSteve says:

    Meh. Cole reached Peak Cole (not to be confused with Peak Coal) when Krugthulu quoted his famous “tire rims and anthrax” parable.

    If Krugman ever quoted one of my comments, I’d quit commenting. (I got quoted, albeit derogatorily and apparently in complete obliviousness to my point, by Julia Ioffe in 2008, but it wasn’t the same.)

  31. 31
    Tommy says:

    @cleek: LOL. You know for years my guilty pleasure was a straight razor shave (also a good shoe shine) a few times a week. Then a hot compress cloth. Off to work ready to rock n’ roll. You can’t get that anywhere anymore.

  32. 32
    AkaDad says:

    Peak Cole implies that we’ve reached the tip of his bizarre accidents.

  33. 33
    Citizen_X says:

    @dmsilev: I’m holding out for the global adoption of “anthrax and tire irons.”

  34. 34
    Violet says:

    @NCSteve: Krugman used my Palin movie title as the title of one of his posts. Geek thrill.

  35. 35
    Citizen_X says:

    @NCSteve: Argh! It already happened! And I forgot that it was “tire rims,” too.

  36. 36
    MattF says:

    @Violet: The OED has been there and done that:

    b. fig. A highest point, summit, or zenith of achievement, success, development, etc.; a climax, an acme. In later use: esp. a point (in time) at which a varying quantity (as traffic flow, prices, electric power, etc.) has reached a maximum; the measure of such a quantity at this point; the representation of such a point on a graph, etc. (cf. spike n.2 2i(b)).

  37. 37
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @Tommy: Well shined shoes are important.

  38. 38
    Violet says:

    @MattF: I was hoping for Peak Wingnut.

  39. 39
    Sir Laffs-a-Lot says:

    I thought Peak Cole was when he went to the barbers and self-destructed by trying to sit down

  40. 40
    Roger Moore says:

    @schrodinger’s cat:

    At his advanced age, ice bucket might prove fatal.

    Obviously, this hypothesis needs to be tested.

  41. 41

    @Tommy: Heh. I just got done using my new single blade. Nothing fancy, but yeah, 20 bones for 4 cartridges – DONE with that, son!

  42. 42
    Violet says:

    @Tommy: You live in a small town. Look for it in a big city. It’s available.

  43. 43
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @Sir Laffs-a-Lot: Subie in a field was pretty good.

  44. 44
    Keith G says:

    @Tim F.: Rick Pearlstein scoffs at the idea that conservative populism will ever be out in the cold. Being wrong on the key issues will not make it go away; electoral defeats will not make it go away; demographic change will not make it go away. They will believe the god-awful things they believe and they will do the god-awful that they do for many decades to come regardless of the consequences. Worse, they have a perplexing ability to find new audiences. Peak wingnut is a cute fairy tail – a myth.

    Wingnut influence will only be kept in check with constant ideological combat fought hand to hand.

  45. 45
    MattF says:

    @Violet: Hmm. No ‘wingnut’. I should write them a letter with a citation from BJ.

  46. 46
    Tommy says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name): My grandfather, the best dressed man in any room, always told me you could tell the quality of a person, on first sight, by their shoes.

  47. 47
    Tommy says:

    @Violet: I’ve tried in DC. Cleveland, and St. Louis (my home city). It doesn’t seem to be done anymore.

  48. 48
    JustRuss says:

    @Trollhattan: So we’ve reached and surpassed peak razor blades?

  49. 49
    MattF says:

    @Tommy: You can get it if you’re willing to pay:

    http://www.roostersmgc.com/services/default.asp

  50. 50
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @Tommy: My ex, whose undergrad degree was in tourism management, said that hotel desk staff judge people by watches and shoes. Not necessarily on price – a beat-up LL Bean field watch or the like carries more cachet than one would initially expect.

  51. 51
    John Revolta says:

    We are all at Peak Cole now.

  52. 52
    Jebediah, RBG says:

    @Tommy:
    Yes, from Harry’s.
    When I am broke or broke-ish, I use trader joe’s goo, when I am feeling a little more flush I use Kiehl’s, which gives a pretty awesome shave.

  53. 53
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @MattF: This place in Milwaukee does it too.

  54. 54
    AkaDad says:

    Or you all could use an electric shaver, like I do, and not have to constantly buy blades.

  55. 55

    Didn’t read the whole thing, but was the word ‘asymptotically’ used?

    I just like that word.

    Congratulations, Cole. You’ve earned the approbation of linguists. Of course TimF’s follow-on post was gruesomely predictive…

  56. 56
    Tommy says:

    @Ben Cisco (onboard the Defiant): Single blade. “Old school.” That is not what I have when I referenced Harry’s. I just like a clean, sharp shave. The razor catches for a second I jettison it and go to another. I am sick of the expense. I hope Harry’s will give me what I want. If not I am right behind you going to a single blade.

    Worse case if I do I will bring anybody over to my household I have an issue with (I got no issues with anybody BTW) and just sharpen that single blade on a strap and ask them to “talk to me old school” :).

  57. 57
    John Cole +0 says:

    Bow down to my greatness.

    Seriously, this was the only interview I recall doing despite a number of requests. Usually when they email I tell them to talk to someone who actually knows something about the subject, and not some idiot potty-mouthed blogger and then introduce them to someone I think is an expert. On this one, though, I figured it was not that big of a deal topic wise and obliged.

  58. 58
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @AkaDad: Don’t like them. They, in my experience, don’t give a smooth enough shave. I want baby smooth, damnit.

  59. 59
    Tommy says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name): I have always thought that was the case …

    If you look at my watches and footwear you get a pretty good clue of who I am.

  60. 60
    Zifnab25 says:

    Careful, John. Keep this up and you may steal the “Famous for being wrong” title away from Bill Kristol.

  61. 61
    Sir Laffs-a-Lot says:

    @Omnes: yes, pure artistry. However Cole was the mentor, not ythe maestro of that masterpiece.

  62. 62
    p.a. says:

    @NCSteve: I think peak Cole will be when he rushes out to save a bird from Steve, trips on Rosie and sprains every joint in his body. The saved bird dumps on him as it flies away. Lily thinks he wants to play and brings him a chew toy.

  63. 63
    Goblue72 says:

    @AkaDad: me too. It’s not as close a shave, but my electric razor has probably earned itself back 10 times over in cost from saving on all the Mach3000 razor blade cartridges.

  64. 64
    Tommy says:

    @Jebediah, RBG: Good to hear I might have made a good order :). I’ve made some “stupid” buys online.

    The other things I got today was a few Bento Boxes. I spend too much time in my house. Got a stunning new library at the community college by me, heading there with my Bento Box lunch.

  65. 65
    The Moar You Know says:

    And to think I was there. Living through history as it was being made. Damn.

    Funny thing is, six years later, we still have not yet hit Peak Wingnut.

  66. 66
    Barney says:

    Razor technology? Al Jaffee did the definitive article in Mad Magazine back in 1979: http://imgur.com/a/fDkFb

  67. 67
    raven says:

    Trying to shave around these 18 stitches is a bitch but the damn dressing won’t stay on my face if I have one day growth. In other razor news, Clark Howard the consumer guru claims that if you rinse and dry a razor after you use it it lasts forevah!

  68. 68
    m31 says:

    A while ago (when my high-school era Sensor handle broke, and I couldn’t countenance paying the $$$ for the 3-5 bladed monstrosities) I went old school with a early 60s Gillette double-edged ‘safety’ razor. You can get new ones these days (Merkur makes good ones ) and a selection of different blades to try (I like these ones from Japan called “Feathers”–they’re the most expensive ones you can get, 35 cents a piece and they last 3-5 shaves). Then get a brush and soap and go to town. There’s a whole world of artisanal shaving soap makers now, too. (I get this great-smelling Bergamot (earl grey tea) soap from some lady in Wisconsin, mmmmm.)

    I tried straight razor shaving, but it’s got more of a learning curve so I mostly do the DE thing.

    go to badgerandblade.com for a great community of overly helpful people who will feed any obsession you feel coming on

  69. 69
    Roger Moore says:

    @Tommy:
    I switched to Harry’s a while back, and I sure don’t miss my old razor. The blades seem to last at least as long as the Gilette I was using, and the price advantage is very nice. The style is also great.

  70. 70
    raven says:

    @Tommy: We have a simplehuman drain board because we couldn’t find anything else that would drain over the side of our old timey sink. It cost $80 4 years ago. Two years ago a part broke and they had discontinued that model so they sent us a different one. Last week that one broke as well. They are sending yet another replacement. It was expensive but the customer service has been great.

  71. 71
    raven says:

    @Roger Moore: Wonder how they do on heads?

  72. 72
    lurker dean says:

    @p.a.: nice, i lol-ed. in another version lily can bring him mustard.

  73. 73
    Baud says:

    I’m somewhat impressed that this thread hasn’t devolved into a “Best Razor to Shave Your Pubes” discussion. Juicers are a classy bunch.

  74. 74

    @p.a.:

    I think peak Cole will be when he rushes out to save a bird from Steve, trips on Rosie and sprains every joint in his body. The saved bird dumps on him as it flies away. Lily thinks he wants to play and brings him a chew toy.

    Nah, your scenario fails to account for the grill going full blast, the frat bros playing frisbee and some random household cleaning product. I don’t think we’ve done washing windows on a ladder yet, so that’s part of the peak.

  75. 75
    dmsilev says:

    @Baud: What is the proper razor for shaving the ass of one’s cat?

  76. 76
    Baud says:

    @dmsilev:

    I don’t know, but I hope it’s a different razor from the one used on one’s pubes.

  77. 77
    Elizabelle says:

    @efgoldman:

    Answered you on the following thread, Mr. Goldman.

    Or email to my gmail account.

    elizabethgraceotr

  78. 78
    Elizabelle says:

    @Tommy:

    Thanks for recommendation re Harry’s. My BIL and 3 nephews all love shaving with a brush and soap and razor.

    It makes me smile, seeing that each nephew has his own setup with a shaving soap dish, etc. Including the one in high school.

    They have grown up so fast.

  79. 79
    HR Progressive says:

    John Cole, Master of the Blogosphere, at the Peak of Peak. He’s piqued our interest with Peak Wingnut, and we’ll never know just how high his Peak will rise.

    Haaail Johhhnnnn Colllllleee. The Masterrrrrrr of the Peaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaak.

    I’ll show myself out, thanks.

  80. 80
    les says:

    @Tommy:
    Huh. I looked. You should shoot for commission.

  81. 81
    GxB says:

    Holy shit! Now if we can just get them to acknowledge the genius that is the “Anthrax and Tire Rims” parable. I’m going to take a moment and bask in the reflective glory a bit, even though I was a wee lurker at the time.

    You’re a great man John Cole – the coordination mishaps make you only more lovable.

  82. 82
    grillo says:

    @Tommy: Well there is always the option of purchasing your very own straight razor. I did that and used it for years. But my temperament is not such that I can carefully maintain that kind of instrument in the manner required to not look like you have been in a knife fight after use. That blade has to be kept perfect and the tools to keep it perfect have to be maintained also.

    And when you add on that I have a weird congenital super power disease, it makes it easier to just not do it.

    So I grew a beard.

  83. 83
    Chickamin Slam says:

    Peak Cole will happen after one of his sayings winds up in a porn film. Or someone does a movie about John Cole and his Balloon Juice followers … wasn’t he wanting that very thing once? Or was that an April Fools?

  84. 84
    cintibud says:

    @Tommy:

    BTW: Can anybody tell me why it is impossible to get a straight razor shave at an “old school” barbershop these days. Been years since I could get one.

    I blame Sweeney Todd

  85. 85
    Steeplejack says:

    @Tommy:

    I have been getting the Harry’s ads, and I looked at the site. The product looks great, but I was a little turned off by the fact that the cartridges seem to be five-bladed ones. I’ve just been burned by Gillette’s Fusion ProGlide system, which is being heavily advertised now. I really didn’t like it and went back to my (three-bladed) Gillette Mach 3. Can you compare and contrast?

  86. 86
    Summer says:

    I’ve always thought peak wingnut was genius. I’m so proud of John and feel vaguely like I’ve done something awesome myself.

  87. 87
    Chickamin Slam says:

    Vintage John Cole of Balloon Juice fame >.>

    January 02, 2002
    Since nothing in my life

    Since nothing in my life is easy, I doubt this will work the first time I try it. If it does work, I will be moderately elated.
    Filed under by John Cole at 08:00 PM

  88. 88
    rikyrah says:

    Tommy,

    My Uncle was the best dressed man I ever met. When he passed away a few months ago at 88, he was still as stylish as he had been all my life. Never stepped out the house unless he was looking good, head to toe – and yes, his shoes were always on point – shined to perfection.

  89. 89
    stinger says:

    Damn, so proud to be a lurker at this great blog. Although I may have reached Peak Lurking.

  90. 90
    WereBear says:

    @dmsilev: Now THAT’S a definitive BJ comment.

    I’m very happy that John is so influential. May his love of pets, cooking skills, and mysterious survival skills continue to flourish!

  91. 91
    Steeplejack says:

    @Tommy:

    What are your everyday shoes? Mine (like Cole’s, I believe) are Merrell Moabs, although my current ones have just gone to the big cobbler’s in the sky and I’m thinking about changing things up.

  92. 92
    Chickamin Slam says:

    A few days later John Cole muses about safety labels.

    January 04, 2002
    Safety Nazi Alert: I was

    Safety Nazi Alert:

    I was opening my club soda about an hour ago, when I found this helpful warning on the bottle;

    Warning! Contents under pressure Cap may blow off causing eye or other serious injury. Point away from face and people, especially while opening.

    No instructions were given on how to drink from the bottle while pointing it away from my face, however. Thank you, Canada Dry Legal Department.
    Filed under by John Cole at 01:46 PM

  93. 93
    shelley says:

    Cor blimey!

  94. 94
    Trollhattan says:

    @dmsilev: The one with the reeeeeally long handle.

  95. 95
    Steeplejack says:

    @Tommy:

    Can anybody tell me why it is impossible to get a straight razor shave at an “old school” barbershop these days.

    Willy’s in Ballston, if you get back to D.C. And if your definition of “old school” allows for all the barbers being Muslims or Asians.

    Khalid is my man. Great haircut, and he always trims my nape and around my ears with a straight razor. Full shave always available.

    ETA: Maybe it is a big-city thing, as someone suggested above.

  96. 96
    Lurking Canadian says:

    @Tommy: two factors. 1) few people train as “barbers” these days. Training as a hair stylist is more common because it opens a wider clientele. 2) more important: AIDS and hepatitis. Thou shalt not fuck around with sharps.

  97. 97
    Roger Moore says:

    @Steeplejack:
    Harry’s razors are a 4 blade design. They seem to work very nicely. The biggest problem with them in my experience is that they’re prone to clogging, especially if you’re lazy like I am and let your beard grow too much between shaves. I think they went with a deeper blade to provide strength and durability, and that makes it more prone to clogging. You can still get them unclogged, but it’s a bit more work than with the Mach 3.

  98. 98
    Patricia Kayden says:

    Hard to believe that John was questioning whether Republicans had reached peak wingnut six years ago, when they have yet to even start climbing the mountain. We’ll see peak wingnut if they win the Senate. Shudder.

  99. 99
    gbear says:

    @Sir Laffs-a-Lot:

    I thought Peak Cole was when he went to the barbers and self-destructed by trying to sit down

    That was Valley Cole.

  100. 100
    Steeplejack says:

    @Roger Moore:

    Thanks for the feedback. I might give ’em a go, especially since, as Tommy pointed out, the price is not bad for a starter set. In my current semi-retired status, I can get by with shaving every second or third day, depending on social commitments, laziness and degree of seediness I’m comfortable with, but I don’t think clogging would be a big problem. And if the shave is that much better it might motivate me to shave more often.

    What I really need is a better beard trimmer for my mustache/goatee. I hate the one I’ve got now—too easy to make mistakes. It’s a Wahl, but I had a Wahl previously that was much better. Can’t find it now, or can’t remember exactly which model it was.

  101. 101
    WereBear says:

    I’m not even going to bring up how much more surface area which a lady deals with.

    Except, you know. NOW.

    But I’m just mentioning it, because nobody cares. And I’ve noticed.

  102. 102

    @dmsilev: I suggest a Brazilian wax.

  103. 103
    Big G says:

    I always hated the multi-blade, and when the standard went to 3 I gave up. The blades
    get clogged and the face of the razor is so big I can’t get it into all the crooks and nannys of
    my face. I do old-school Merkur safety razor, with double-edged blades. That’s one blade, two sides. Each blade gives me
    the same number of shaves as the old double-blade Sensor, and I just bought a package of
    100 Astra blades for $11. That’s eleven cents a blade, which is 6 to 7 shaves before I notice a difference. I’ve tried Feather, but the things are so
    sharp I slice myself up without even noticing it.
    BTW, I use this with (same as Cole) Taylor’s of Old Bond Street sandalwood cream , plus their pre-shave gel.

  104. 104
    Tehanu says:

    I just re-read Robert Heinlein’s short story “The Year of the Jackpot” which is all about peak peak. Not a reassuring story, no… it was in an anthology titled something like, “Stories About the End of the World.”

  105. 105
    MikeBoyScout says:

    @AkaDad: this…obviously

  106. 106
    PurpleGirl says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: Or we can say peak wingnut is asymptotic, on a graph the value approaches the axis but never crosses it.

  107. 107
  108. 108
    Xantar says:

    I shave with a straight razor. Lather with a brush. Closest shave I have ever had and nothing will ever replace it. It takes a while, sure, but if I do it at night my face is still perfectly presentable the next day. I have used that razor continuously for the past three years and I just need to sharpen it against a 4000 grit stone every few months.

  109. 109
    J R in WV says:

    My last (and only) straight razor shave was the night before I entered boot camp. Ouch!

    In Roanoke, Va. I told the guy I was headed to boot camp, make it tight and white, I didn’t want the boot camp barber to gloat.

    After boot camp, in ET school, the CNO made well kempt beards legit for sailors, as it was traditional back in the day – way back in the day, as I enlisted just ahead of the draft board in 1971 with a draft lottery number in two digits. I forget, 27, 72, somewhere in there.

    Haven’t been clean shaved since then, tho I went down to a goatee once to start a new job, 35 years ago.

    I figure by not shaving, I’ve saved several hundred dollars a year on the equipment alone.

    Then in 1993, a co-worker I respected quit getting haircuts and started a little ponytail. So my last barber visit was in 1989-90. Those run 15$ now, don’t they? Twice a month, 15 years, that’s a lot of scratch.

    Growing a beard itches a lot, the first 2 or 3 weeks. Shaving itches a lot the day after a close shave.

    I admit I quit the ponytail this past summer, but my wife used a clipper set we got for the livestock but never used, she just uses a #2 gadget for distance and cuts it all off.

    Then I trim my beard and I’m good to go. Shoes usually Rockports deck shoes, Merrill walking shoes sometimes. Or hiking boots, 4 letters, Esomething…forgetting. Old. whatever.

    No watch, don’t care what time it is, haven’t for decades. If I’m looking at a computer, I know what time it is, if I care.

    Khakis, polo shirt, works on at least 2 continents. so far.

  110. 110
    Eric U. says:

    I try to promote knowlege of Cleek’s law every chance I get, because I basically had a wingnut tell me that was his political philosophy. I should introduce him to Cleek’s law, I think he would agree with me.

    I posit Eric U’s parodox, the infinite sequence of increasing wingnuttiness by which we approach, but never achieve, peak wingnut

  111. 111
    Eric U. says:

    @Big G: I always hated the fact that 2 blade razors would clog. For whatever reason 5 blade razors don’t clog. And the large number of blades actually makes it possible to sharpen the blades more. I thought it was funny when they were introduced, but now I probably will stick with 5 blades.

  112. 112
    Suzanne says:

    Well, whoo-hoo-hoo, look who knows so much!

    That’s so cool.

    But I can’t wait for “naked mopping” and “where the fuck is the mustard” to become a thing.

  113. 113
    Ruckus says:

    @AkaDad:
    You could do like I do and not shave. OK about once a month I do. And that’s the neck. Four blades last me a couple of years. Easy. I do trim the beard once a week. Having to shave is a pain. Although if if is a pain in the ass, you have parked your head in the wrong place.

  114. 114
    bluefoot says:

    @Tommy: According to a recent conversation with my hairdresser, it depends on what state you’re in. She says she trained with a straight razor and in her previous state was licensed to use it, but here in MA she is not licensed to do anything except hair on the head. She said using straight razors in a barbershop/hairdressers is illegal in some states.

  115. 115
    Denali says:

    @John Cole,

    I stand in awe of your awesomeness. Or something.

Comments are closed.