The sun rises over the distant mountain range, painting the Arizona sky a spectrum of red, orange, pink, violet, and finally sky blue. The gorgeous sky casts a bright glow on the red rock and sand below. Down in the valley, camped at the base of Shiprock is the Gunslinger and his posse, in hot pursuit of ‘Wild Hair’ Willy and his gang. Gunslinger and his posse have been riding the plains for weeks tracking the vicious outlaw. Gunslinger’s tracker, Ben “Friendly” Barnes, suspects they are getting closer by the day. The posse is up early this morning getting ready to head out for another day of rough riding. Elbert ‘Trapper’ Avery and Mark ‘Snake Eyes’ McCall were working on a breakfast of hotcakes and beans, while the Gunslinger is cleaning his pistols with Charlie ‘Gold-Tooth’ Franco.
Ernest ‘Doc’ Herbert raises a hair-splitting razor to his jawline, preparing to trim up his neckline to maintain his dapper appearance. Suddenly, the crack of pistol fire rings out through the cool and quiet Arizona morning air. *PING* The razor leaps out of Doc’s hands and falls to the ground. The men all duck for cover, scanning the ridge line looking for the shooter, hands on their pistols. Friendly then notices the Gunslinger holding a smoking pistol.
“Gunslinger?!?! What was that?” exclaims Friendly. “That was my good razor,” says Doc sadly.
“It don’ matter how good that razor is, if ya don’ use it right, you ain’t doin’ yourself any good.”
“What do you mean?” asks Doc.
“You were about to trim your neckline at the jawline! Everyone knows that you trim your neck just above the adam’s apple.”
“I didn’t know that,” mutters Trapper.
“I think y’all need to hear my five rules of a great manly beard,” says the Gunslinger in a huff.
“But what about Wild Willy?” asks Snake Eyes.
“Ehhhh we’ll catch up,” says Gunslinger.
“So RULE NUMBER ONE,” begins the Gunslinger, “As we’ve already discussed, you need to trim your beard right above your adam’s apple. If you shave much more above that it’ll give your beard a thinner and flimsier appearance. You don’ want that. Nuff said,” says the Gunslinger.
“NUMBER TWO, you should trim your beard regularly. This is how you keep it in shape. Take pride in your beard. So you should keep it up. Trim wild hairs that sprout up out of there to keep that nice shape.”
“NUMBER THREE, use beard oil. Me? I prefer my own custom blend of teakwood and patchouli. But that’s just me. Beard oil hydrates the skin beneath the beard while still nourishing the hair of your beard. It’s important to rub it into your beard and then comb it in there real good. It’s also important that you don’ get your face too greasy. Ain’t that right Trapper?”
Trapper, stunned, rubs his face afraid of pulling back an oily palm.
“While we’re at it, NUMBER FOUR, use a WOODEN comb. A comb is a must-have for a beard, but you can’t trust your beard to some plas-tique comb. It has imperfections in its teeth that’ll tear and yank at your beard. You need a hearty wooden comb that is anti-static and will distribute beard oil and beard butter well in your beard.”
“Finally,” says the Gunslinger, “NUMBER FIVE, THE GOLDEN BEARD RULE. DO NOT COMPARE YOUR BEARD TO EVERYONE ELSE. Your beard is yours. There will always be someone with a bigger and thicker beard, but the best thing about your beard is that it is YOUR beard. The good book says not to envy and that applies to beards too. Beards should boost your confidence, not take away from it,” finishes the Gunslinger with a grin.
Narrated by Brandon Warner