It's been a month since Movember washed down bathroom sinks to the relief of lovers and neighborhood parents. It's been just one day since Santa Claus dunked his exhausted whiskers in a sitz bath. But the brave men and gender-role-thwarting women of B.O.M.B. (Brotherhood of Mustaches & Beards) are still going strong.
At 7 p.m. on Saturday night at Tobacco Road, the third annual B.O.M.B. Beard and Mustache Competition celebrates South Florida's most architecturally daring facial hair in a 14-category showdown.
All proceeds will go to the Miami Rescue Mission's comprehensive support of Miami's needy and homeless populations. If the organizers manage to solve income inequality and the systemic ills of capitalism, it is entirely possible that any leftover cash will go to hair transplants for patchy-faced youths.
According to group founder Brian Damaged, the group has three national champions in the sport, including "Jon Rice, our big beard guy," who won the freestyle category in 2011 for contorting his beard into something Damaged likens to a furry octopus.
Other national champs include Damaged himself, who won in a goatee category (which he insists is not treated like Olympic speed walking; "All categories are taken seriously by each competitor.") and a guy who won best Amish beard, despite not actually being Amish. Before charges of cultural appropriation start to stick like a blanket-rubbed balloon to a beardo's face, let it be clarified that all the category means is a beard with no mustache.
Tennyson wrote of the obscurant lure of the beard in his In Memoriam A.H.H.: "Strong Son of God, immortal Love, / Whom we, that have not seen thy face / By faith, and faith alone, embrace". Got what it takes to win immortality or, at least, a trophy? Sign up, already! If not, there will be plenty of food and drink to stain your 'stache, as well as a musical performance by Los Bastardos Magnificos, a loud and hairy band whose pelos peligrosos are so electrifying that the band can just plug their guitars into their chins.
Spectators are admitted for free but are encouraged to make a donation. Entry costs $22 in all categories except for "Most Creative Beard" which need not actually sprout from your face, opening the competition to eunuchs, ladies, and grandmothers sitting next to us on the bus who have actually heard of tweezers.
Tickets are available at bombmiami.eventbrite.com, which is much less likely than a similar Google search to get you in trouble with those smooth-cheeked goons at the NSA.
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