The Low Cost of High Performance

Attempting to recover an attitude of gratitude, I synthesized recent developments into a new American shave, inspired by the "Made In USA" label on the witch hazel solution. This is meant as a celebration of diversity, and the collective triumph over ignorant power that my country should still represent.

Because even though I was not so lucky as to have been born with a silver shaving brush in my hand, and will probably never own a soap costing more than $12, I have learned so many different ways to prepare my skin and lather up that there is no doubt in my mind: the opportunities available to shavers today, in the privacy of their own bathrooms, surpass those of any time or place in history.

After the witch hazel cleanse, I applied something like three drops jojoba oil to the beard area and didn't wipe it off. (Like witch hazel, I think jojoba is a plant native to this hemisphere, at least.) Then I mixed up some hair softening serum with pumpkin juice and baking soda, and rubbed that in. It smelled less like carbamide, and more like pumpkin, than usual. I was just the other day talking about formaldehyde with an instructor of hairdressing, which she said had been a problem with the "Brazilian Blowout" -- so that pleases me, relative to the Noxzema prep.

Then I face lathered Williams, a very modest amount, even less than my small synthetic's capacity. It could have used more water, I noticed as I got to the lower neck, but no problems. Instead of long strokes, I used more aggression and skin tension WTG, because the hair was presenting itself that way. This would certainly have been a viable one-pass shave for most people.

But (yay, diversity!) not me. I squeezed out the brush and did a 2-in-1 sort of ATG pass, approaching regions of my face with oblique strokes, and finishing them on the slickness, which, while not quite at "hydroplastic envelope" levels, was more than sufficient, and actually more conducive to shaving close. I seldom try to get ALL of my moustache, down to the root, but this was definitely one of those days.

There was even enough left after rinsing to skim for immature growth. In the end, a BBS shave... well, you know, if I don't press to hard, in the wrong direction. I picked a strong aftershave to challenge the skin barrier, Aqua Velva Musk, and it picked up a couple spots of skin that got razed, but was very tolerable, as I expected. I backed it off to limit the drying effect, and finished with cocoa butter.

Oh, shoot -- that doesn't come from the U.S.! Oh, well. North, Central and South America are also America. Solidaridad!

Now that you're here, let's put you to work. We can't
ALL f-- around with stocks for a living!

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