For Number One: Parker 87R

Arko and pumpkin juice, my Rimei and the worn Personna blade set the stage for a big Father's Day shave, leaving plenty of SAS stubble and a skin free of injury. An oil cleanse was still missed, as every old scar in the shaving area shone brightly. But around my mouth, the chin, and my neck crease -- all areas critical to comfort remained satisfactorily smooth at bedtime, reward for having stood up to the Rimei's low natural pitch.

I still love the razor, but we grew apart as I unwittingly conformed to a more modern, high-traction technique. (Not multi-blade high traction, but higher than before.) Assisted by bathroom experimental dermatology, tougher skin and softer hair made the Super Speed, with a steep natural pitch, decidedly preferable. I like the old school, but have never been enamored with things that are simply old. If I'm ever going to settle down with just one razor, it will have to be shiny.

So now, to the spotlight I bring the Parker 87R, already invested with more hope than any razor I have previously owned, despite having never been used. You probably shouldn't take the following as a product review... more like a violation of privacy, a peep on a new relationship.

Her Name Is "Ruby"

Right into the fray with the same, worn Personna blade. Oil cleanse followed by witch hazel, Williams and pumpkin juice. Unbelievable: the high-traction attitude of the Super Speed, with the edge-exposed bite of the Rimei... I'm thinking, this is pretty near perfect. A little rough, ample room to learn... but then I remember -- the condition of the blade! The only possible explanation for this performance is that this razor is perfectly calibrated to my face, my hand, and my favorite blade. A natural.

What about the apparent overclamping at the blade corners? I don't know. Indeed, I see little flaws throughout this gem. The doors align close enough, but don't form a perfectly continuous arc on one end. The center bar isn't perfectly straight in profile, judging it like the roof of a house; like the blade, a little down on the ends. The gap isn't quite even across one edge. The razor's beauty and function are practically undiminished.

I have some passing acquaintance with Indian pride. To recreate a razor named "Aristocrat," even from another escapee of the British Empire, and the national origin of the safety razor, was no small condescension. Anyone can see that the 87R stands out of the Parker line like a Roman pillar. I'd like to take this opportunity to express my gratitude to the manufacturer, and to my loving family on Father's Day.


  1. "with the same, worn Personna blade" At two weeks and five days use, Ebenezer Scrooge would be proud of you! :-)

    1. I'd resurrect William Emery Nickerson to judge me, if I could. I get a sense that all the good technical insight originated with (and departed with) him. I'm expecting 40 shaves now, for sure, based on old Gillette advertising... but we'll see.

      After going to the lake yesterday, I was able to skip the oil and just go with face-lathered PdP and pumpkin juice this morning for another DFS. A little burn on the application of lime sec, no alum... a guy could get used to this!