As I was preparing for my trip to Beijing, I found myself anticipating the freedom of growing out my chin hair while in China. Really, I was just looking forward to the opportunity for laziness in this regard. It is kind of a pain to be diligent in plucking because I have better things to do and it never really makes a difference anyway. Yes, I have chin hair, more than one and they do what they want despite my efforts to keep up. They elude me and seem to be on some grow juice. The chin hair always find a way to grow undetected until they are long and glistening. It is never convenient to get rid of them either; they tend to go unnoticed until I am out and about, far away from my tweezers or “chin hair chopsticks” as I will now refer to them. Sometimes they are long enough to grab between two fingers, but it feels like such a scene to attempt to yank the thing out in public, I always get caught. I had imagined that coming to China I would find nothing but free-range chin hair. I thought this may be nice, they do what they want anyway and with society on my side I could be free of the burden of grooming my chin. But now I am here and…it hasn’t seemed necessarily encouraged. Sooo, I am a little thrown back.
I “grew” this stereotype while working at a sub shop in Saint Cloud, many moons ago. The sub shop was next to a Chinese buffet, I didn’t eat there often, but I did see the employees fairly often as the two restaurants shared a hallway that lead to the restrooms. The hallway smelled like Chinese food and bread mixed together in vomit hiding in some cranny. It seemed to always be the case that when I would enter the hallway to go to the restroom I would run into, “Chinese Chin Hair Man” with whom I could never make direct eye contact (which is how I feel people look at me when my chin hairs break free, they just stare at the hair), I was only able to STARE at his ONE, EXCESSIVELY LONG, black chin hair as it FLOWINGLY waved at me from his mole. I am sure he observed my expression as this….
So, naturally I assumed that ALL Chinese men ALWAYS grow long hair out of their chin moles as a sign of some sort or a thing that China men do, like a coming of age or something. Now having been here in China for a week, surrounded by many, many “CCHM” I have yet to see any actual chin hairs undulating or intimidating me. So, really, I am just surrounded by Chinese PEOPLE, millions of them and now the tables are turned, they are looking at me like I have a dangling chin hair. So, ultimately, I guess I have found freedom because chin hair or not I don’t give a pluck who is staring!