This may come as a shock to some of you, but not everyone is actually the person they portray themselves as on the internet. I know, I know... take a moment to collect your jaw and/or anus from the floor.

While I've always challenged myself to embody the sarcastic, narcissistic, suburbanized giant among men revealed on these pages, I too have been known to skew perceptions across multiple social networks, most notably when it comes to my face. This face to be exact, the one you have all come to know and love and fear and accept friend requests from and well, let's be honest, oft times imagine what it would feel like pressing softly against your cheek:

Here's the thing though -- see that glorious beard, its auburn glory playing a follicular symphony across my expansive jawline? As irrefutably awe-inspiring of a beard as it might be, I only wear it about two months out of the year. Most of the time I actually look like this:

Don't act so surprised. Besides, this was taken after six on a Saturday. What am I, a farmer?

My "winter beard" as I like to call it only makes a seasonal appearance for a multitude of reasons, but I'll spare you the entirety of my facial hair manifesto and just hit you with the top three:
  1. Much like Christmas or falling off the wagon, it's difficult to appreciate really awesome things if they happen every day.
  2. Summer beard becomes sweaty and itchy beard faster than you might imagine.
  3. My wife thinks it makes me look -- as she so delicately puts it -- like a "homeless junkie, whose jizz-encrusted mass of face pubes is so overwhelming that you almost don't notice he also has rabies".
This year, however, I've added a new element to the annual Jay turns Wolfman event. Borne from equals parts laziness and cheapassery, I decided that I also wouldn't cut my hair for the duration of winter beard season. I'm about two months in, and starting to think my wife was on to something with her homeless junkie theory:

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