To shave or not to shave

To shave, or not to shave – that is the question:
Whether ’tis simpler in the mind to suffer
The scruff and stubble of persistent facial hair
Or to take issue with the field of follicles
And by a razor end them. To shave, to trim –
No more – and by a trim I mean to end
The folly, and the thousand little hairs
That flesh is heir to. ‘Tis an extirpation
Devoutly to be wished. To shave, to trim –
To trim – perchance to bleed: ay, there’s the rub,
For in that shave of death what blood may come
When my hand has slipped with that fickle blade
Must give me pause. There’s the aspect
That makes caution out of simple grooming.
For who would bear the barbs and japes of friends,
Th’ entertainer’s line, the snide man’s mockery,
The stings of patchy growth, the beard’s delay,
The impudence of comedy, and the spurns
That the unshaven merit from the clean faces,
When he himself might his quietus make
With a bare chin? Who would bristles bear,
To wait and strive after a fuller beard,
But that the dread of pain incurred while shaving,
The unrelenting bleeding, arrested only by
Toilet paper squares, muddles the urge,
And makes us rather bear those jokes they make
Than opt for others of our fumbled attempts?
Thus hemophobia makes cowards of us all,
And thus the paler hue of resolution
Is reddened o’er with bloody train of thought,
And determination of much health and hygiene
With this regard their efforts turn awry
And lose the sense of action. Soft you now,
The fair Gillette! – Sir, in thy blades
Be none of my skin dismembered.

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