Now that “No-Shave November” has finally ended, with most of us staring wistfully into mirrors at cleanly-shaven faces, let us take a moment to appreciate Brett Keisel: a man that treats shaving like most of us do root canals.
Only when absolutely necessary.
He started growing it before the 2010 season to “change the team’s luck” after they missed the playoffs in 2009, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
He refused to shave it until Pittsburgh’s season was over.
The team made it all the way to the Super Bowl that year despite a gut-wrenching loss to the Packers in Dallas.
When Keisel finally did shave “Da Beard,” as it’s affectionately called, he found the best possible method.
He hosted an event called “Shear the Beard” that raised more than $40,000 for the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC.
Keisel grew his facial hair out again for the following season and hosted a second “Shear the Beard” event.
He’ll shave for charity again this February after Pittsburgh’s season is over.
Though injuries have forced Keisel to miss two out of the Steelers’ last three games and barely play in the third, this isn’t about the man.
It’s about the mound of hair occupying the immediate vicinity around Keisel’s face.
The beard has more personality than everyone you will see walking on the street today.
Little woodland creatures have built entire civilizations within its folds.
If you fired a bullet at Keisel, his beard would morph into a shield like light from Green Lantern’s ring.
Those alone don’t make it great.
Lots of celebrities’ body parts are tweeting now.
Anne Hathaway’s nipple, Kim Kardashian’s rump and Ryan Gosling’s abs all have more than 500 followers.
None of them seem as cool to hang out with as Brett Keisel’s beard.
The beard puts up with all manner of weather and abuse.
I’m certain it’s been pushed, pulled, sweated and bled on.
He shaves it after every year and it keeps coming back stronger and more magnificent.
Keisel himself has called it “magical” and “the greatest beard of all time.”
Jeff Langum might disagree (he won the best Full Beard Natural at the 2013 World Beard & Moustache Championships), but more people awe at Keisel’s beard on a regular basis.
It regularly battles Troy Polamalu’s hair for headlines.
Polamalu cut his hair for the first time in 12 years for veterans.
That’s an awesome cause, but it would take another dozen years to repeat the feat.
Da Beard has been removed and regrown for the past three seasons.
Its resiliency and dedication to a good cause should be celebrated.
All other praise aside, look at this thing.
You could throw away your razor until the Pyeongchang Olympics and not accrue that level of facial hair.
It represents all that man has accomplished throughout history.
Look back at the facial hair you grew in the past month.
Now look at Brett Keisel.
Back to your pathetic stubble.
Back to Keisel.
Now weep, both in embarrassment and jubilation.
For Brett Keisel has grown the best beard in the NFL, and his quest lasts for far longer than November.