Ah, the moustache. A word with a pronunciation so difficult the American’s changed the actual spelling. Seriously. ‘Must dash’. Not that hard. It’s hair that grows on the upper lip of most humans, although women don’t often grow it. The average moustachioed man touches his whiskers 750 times a day. Policemen in India are paid more if they have one. Moustaches are capable of absorbing 20 times their own weight. And back over in dear old America, they have an American Moustache Institute. Only in America. ‘Protecting the rights of, and fighting discrimination against moustache Americans by promoting the growth, care and culture of the moustache’. Yes. Well. I’m sure homosexual people are feeling your pain. Oh, boy. Yes, the moustache is a magnificent beast.
The word originally was borrowed from the Italian word mostacho, and its plural, mustachios, survives in English to this very day. The slang word stache comes from 1985. And the Dutch, oh those beautiful Dutch, offer us the phrase, de befborstel. Since this is a family blog, I’m really struggling to translate that phrase. Erm. Well, it refers to the moustache as a tool for, erm, pleasuring, erm, a woman’s, erm, you know, the bit – at the – erm, top, of, erm, her, erm, special area. Rhymes with Morris. Sort of. Begins with a C. Although I’m not sure about that. Wouldn’t it just tickle your Morris instead? Those Dutch are really nuts. Absolutely nuts. Shall we move on? I think we must.
Well, look, we have to rule out the toothbrush. Hitler ruined that look. I know people are trying to take it back, to reclaim it, which is a noble cause, but, sorry, it just doesn’t cut it for me. It’s not my job to take it back. Freestyle is messy. I’d look ridiculous with a Dalí stache. More ridiculous. Sorry about that. The chevron. Stalin and Selleck have worn them, and it was popular amongst porn stars in the 1970s. Well, that’s a real mixed bag, isn’t it? The Fu Manchu. He was a mass murdering lunatic. Moustaches haven’t fared well in history, have they? The English is fantastic. It’s too fantastic. I feel like I wouldn’t do it justice. The pencil was often the moustache of choice for spivs in the 1940s. I’m not a spiv. No amount Clark Gabling can change that impression. The handlebar is often the choice of villains, often in the Wacky Races. And it’s stereotypical to Italians, of which I am one. I don’t want to be a walking stereotype. And the horseshoe, whilst one of my favourites, is often worn by sportsmen. I’m about sporty as Sporty Spice. And she wasn’t sporty.
You know, I think I’ll go for the walrus. It’s rugged, noble, gentlemanly and an all time classic. A beautifully rough and ready kind of style. Popular in the early 19th century, where my brain resides. Everyone had one. From scientists, to politicians, to artists. They were the Tamagotchi’s of their day. Except good. It fell out of culture in the 1920s but experienced something of a resurgence in the 1960s among hippies and other such jobless wasters. Friedrich Nietzsche had a unique combo, a walrus-handlebar moustache, and in the world of upper lip hair, I think that’s pretty hard to beat.
The walrus. My favourite moustache.
What’s your favourite moustache, readers?
Photo: Friedrich Nietzsche and his mighty walrus-handlebar moustache
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