A guide to understanding the responsibility of having, maintaining, and benefitting from your playoff beard.
I intend for this guide to be a simple and informative collection of relevant beard knowledge and wisdom. People that are unable to grow a playoff beard are still welcome to read this guide (except for Crosby, I hate that guy). But everyone else, teens, ladies, Tyler Seguin (it's not his fault, but it's true) are all invited to glean some beard knowledge and get a peak inside the Bearded Brethren (the holy order of the beard). There is a lot of work involved in having a playoff beard, there is more to it than simply hiding your razor and hoping your girlfriend doesn't notice.
It is well known and well documented that the most important thing a fan can do during the playoffs is grow a playoff beard. The growth of a wild beard draws power from old prophets and ancient gods (all of whom are well documented as being members of the Bearded Brethren). This power is then conferred to the team to assist them in dominating their foes. It is similar to the effect achieved by ritualistic sacrifices. Again, well documented, what follows is not my opinion, it's science.
Take care of your beard and your beard will take care of you . . .
Hygiene: Cleaning your beard is of incredible importance. Shampoo is ideal, but any kind of soap will function. This will keep your beard from getting that crusty sewer rat look. If you have a normal job, need to socialize with women or normal people, this is probably the most important step. This will also keep your beard smelling fresh and clean. A clean beard is a happy beard.
The Importance of combing: A wild beard has a tendency to grow in much the same way as bamboo. It is both chaotic and ordered. Both beautiful and terrible. It laughs in the face of any attempt to tame or control it. And some mornings you will awake to your beard mocking you with its independence, bed head on your face. Combing your beard gives the illusion of order, the facade of control. But make no mistake, combing your beard is not an act where you assert your dominance over your beard. In fact, it is almost identical to calming a tiger by petting it, remember comb in the direction of hair growth, not against the grain. Combing has the added side benefit of cleaning food, coffee, soup, cereal, and other food stuffs from your beard. These substances shame your beard if allowed to persist. Beer is the only exception. Originally discovered by the Vikings as a way of giving their beard, and thereby themselves, more power. An occasional offering of beer (which normal people will incorrectly interpret as spilling or dribbling) will help keep your beard strong.
Trimming: Trimming of the beard itself is permitted under no circumstances. In order for the team to benefit from the full power of a wild playoff beard, the beard must be grown in its natural wild habitat. By attempting to tame the wild beard with trimmer, scissors or razor, you will not only negate the benefit to the team, but you risk incurring the wrath of the ancient bearded gods. If you're lightning proof, by all means incur that wrath. Mustaches may be trimmed, groomed, or even shaved without any negative side effects.
The Mustache Exception: Your great and powerful wild playoff beard does not need to include a mustache. While the beard is symbolic of power, virility and all things masculine. The mustache, by contrast, is symbolic of deceit, weakness, and infantile behavior. You may elect to grow a lip ferret along with your beard as the power of your beard will far overpower the negative effects of the mustache. However, if you are one of the unfortunate that cannot grow a proper beard in conjunction with the mustache, you should under no circumstances allow the mustache to grow unchecked. In extreme cases this can result in Malign Hypercognitive Disorder (a.k.a. Evil Genius Syndrome), sociopathic tendencies, or even a desire to root for the Montreal Canadians.
The Neck Beard Exception: The exception to all of the above is for those unfortunate, cursed individuals who can only grow a neck beard. No one likes a neck beard. They are not attractive to look at. They are unpleasant to wear. And are unflattering in any kind of way. If you are one of these poor souls, don't feel bad, it's probably not your fault. It is most likely that your parents lost a bet with God. It is possible, that a life lived in purity, charity, and contrition may prevent your curse from passing to the next generation. There is no hope for you, but you could save your children from the same fate (as you are currently reading this and are therefore likely a regular of this blog, it's likely too late for them as well).
I hope this guide has helped you better understand your beard. And how vital that beard is to the success of the Bruins. I began the growth of mine when the Bruins clinched their playoff birth. If you have waited until now you are still contributing. The important thing is that we all do our part to assist in the pursuit of the Cup.