For as long as I can remember, I have been deeply fascinated by science. One of my earliest memories involves a cross-country trip (nothing can prepare you for how immense Canada is – you have to drive across it) with a big stack of science books – of course the highlight of the whole trip was the Royal Tyrell Museum of Paleontology in Drumheller, Alberta. As a matter of fact, the second-most difficult decision I’ve ever had to make was in high school, when I had to choose whether to pursue a career in science or music. The most difficult, incidentally, was deciding whether my best friend would live or die*.
Science has always been a huge part of my life, which is why I am devastated to say that I am going to have to quit:
In a recent experiment, Paul Vasey of Canada’s University of Lethbridge and Barnaby Dixson of New Zealand’s Victoria University of Wellington found that while beards may be stylish, and are probably a mark of alpha males, they aren’t necessarily a key tool for attracting the ladies. “Women … do not rate bearded faces as more attractive than clean-shaven faces,” the researchers wrote in the journal Behavioral Ecology.
Both men and women said that with beards, the men looked older and more aggressive than they did with their beards shaved. The viewers also ascribed higher social status to the men when they were bearded than when they were baby-faced. Women said that the clean-shaven faces were more attractive than the whiskery ones.
There comes a time in everyone’s life where they are forced to choose between their deeply-held personal beliefs, and the scientific consensus. Many people find it difficult to accept scientific evidence for the age of the earth. Others find the vastness of the cosmos too daunting and shut out the evidence for the Big Bang. Still others cannot bring themselves to accept the fact that all life is descended from a common ancestor, in defiance of the Genesis account. It seems that I am forced to make the same decision.
Look at this face:
The evidence is irrefutable – women, men, it doesn’t matter: my beard is the source of my incredible sex appeal. But one time I shaved back in 2006. Look, if you dare, upon my twisted, shorn visage and quake in terror at its awful hideousness!
Oh sure, she’s gorgeous, and she’s smiling, but she obviously doesn’t mean it. Look at the panic in her eyes! She feels the whiskerless brush of my cheek against hers and can barely contain her revulsion.
It is clear: either science is wrong, or my beard is wrong. And if my beard is wrong, I don’t want to be right. If you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go tell the biology department at UBC that they’re wasting their time, because there are clearly still monkeys.
*My best friend is a talking pie.
*H/t to Niki, Patty, Joel, and Schmulie for being really cool and interesting people who are also stupidly attractive. Seriously – goddamn.