02-18-2014, 10:38 AM
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So my father-in-law has been recently diagnosed with multiple myeloma AND has been struggling with multiple sclerosis for years. He's one of the most kind, gentle, and selfless men I've ever had the honor of knowing and from day one, has treated like a gentleman and an equal. This is important to note since I was the one to take away his only daughter and have 2 children with her before we officially tied the knot! I did, however, show him the respect he deserves and asked for his blessing before popping the question.

I've been doing the wetshaving thing for a few months now and have been extolling its many virtues to pretty much every man I am either friends or family with. My father-in-law mentioned that for years he's used an electric razor due to its ease and safety because his hands tremble nowadays due to illness. Of course, I was shocked and horrified that such a wonderful gentleman would be subjected to the vile torture of such a barbaric piece of machinery!

I made the offer to shave him the RIGHT way. And he surprisingly agreed to let me put a double-edged razor to his face and throat with little experience in the arena. I watched videos of Turkish barbers' techniques with the oil massages and towel wrapping, etc. I must preface that I am a registered nurse and do have experience shaving other men from when I was doing my nursing school clinicals at the nursing homes. The old men loved getting shaved and being able to feel like proper gentlemen again after days of growth on their faces and necks.

The day came and I went out and bought some Pinaud Clubman, some Nivea aftershave balm, and some castor oil to help make my own pre-shave oil (which I'd never done but had researched thoroughly). I went armed with a boiled and sterilized Gillette Superspeed from 1965 - a mild shaver but just what was needed for this occasion. I decided on Astra's for my blade of choice. In my kit was packed my trusty Omega 49 for lathering and my Tweezerman for wetting/rinsing the face, a couple of small towels (one for the hot pre-shave and one for the cold post-shave), and of course...the tried and true puck of Mitchell's Wool Fat.

While I laid out my instruments on the counter and went about preparing everything, I explained the whole process step-by-step to my keenly interested father-in-law who had settled into a make-shift barber chair (La-Z-Boy draped in towels) in the living room. I pretended to be an old-hand at this and stayed cool and collected to keep him at ease. However, in reality I was admittedly a bit nervous!

I started with a warm water prep to his face with the Tweezerman that had been hydrating for about 10 minutes. I had a bowl of hot water with a towel and the brushes in it and another bowl of cold water for rinsing the razor. Next came the pre-shave oil which I painted on with the Tweezerman and then massaged lightly around the entire face and neck areas. I could feel my father-in-law begin to relax now and our conversation was flowing nicely.

The hot towel was applied to the best of my ability and I let it sit until I could no longer feel the heat of it on my wrist. Once the towel was removed, I went about prepping the soap in a bowl and whipped up a gorgeous lather of MWF and the smell filled the room. We both agreed it was a wonderfully clean but not overpowering scent.

I did my first pass with caution and WTG, and it went well, with no tugging or (most importantly) blood-letting. It was interesting and challenging learning his face and hair growth patterns on the fly while adjusting to the proper blade angles. My concentration was firmly dialed in at this point and conversation slowed to a halt. The silence descended and all that was heard was the blade mowing down whiskers with ease on a gentle glide across his face. It was very surreal.

After 3 passes and some touch-ups, my father-in-law had a damn fine shave and only a few minor weepers which were quickly quelled by the cold towel (which was kept in the fridge through the whole shave) and the splash of first the Nivea balm. The final step brought the scent of the barber shop and memories of childhood with the application of the Pinaud Clubman aftershave.

A firm handshake and a sincere "thank you, that was just what I needed" was procured from my father-in-law (a man of few words).

My response?

"It was my pleasure, sir."

3 153
 02-18-2014, 10:56 AM
  • Johnny
  • Emeritus
  • Wausau, Wisconsin, USA
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Job well done young man.

I had the pleasure of shaving my father in his later years and it was rewarding for both of us, especially me.

189 26,344
 02-18-2014, 11:04 AM
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Excellent and a job very well done! Smile

93 21,373
 02-18-2014, 11:35 AM
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A nice description, and it sounds like a great experience. Good job.

256 14,776
 02-18-2014, 11:37 AM
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i'm really moved and impressed by your story. your operations certainly tighten the bonds between human beings. excellent! Smile

7 1,624
 02-18-2014, 12:02 PM
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Thanks gents. It was a great experience

3 153
 02-18-2014, 12:57 PM
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Very nice of you, and I'm sure it was quite the flashback to the old days of shaving for him.

Sent from my LG-P769 using Tapatalk 2

0 876
 02-18-2014, 01:38 PM
  • OldDog23
  • Senior Member
  • BeanTown MetroWest
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sounds like your FIL got a good return on his investment ! Biggrin

0 1,291
 02-18-2014, 01:48 PM
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Very nice Bud; very nice. I'm getting on the downside of life. I wish I had someone like you.

In all fairness, my daughters presents are all shave or cigar related.

I would worry about her shaves.Wink

2 546
 02-18-2014, 07:21 PM
  • Elendil
  • Raggedy man, good night
  • The snow's back.
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You're a good man, Bud. Here's to your FIL, as well, who has it really tough, but hasn't let it change the gentleman he clearly is.

0 1,136
 02-18-2014, 08:46 PM
  • freddy
  • Banned
  • San Diego, California, U.S.A.
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A wonderful description of two fine gentlemen. Thank you for sharing the story, Bud.

2 5,000
 02-18-2014, 09:16 PM
  • evnpar
  • Emeritus
  • Portland, Oregon
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Thanks so much for sharing your very personal story. I'll bet that you are a terrific nurse.

39 6,300
 02-19-2014, 01:09 PM
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Thanks again, fellas.

3 153
 02-19-2014, 02:00 PM
  • Shaun
  • Senior Member
  • St Peters, NSW, Australia
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Toward the end of my own father's working life, he found employment as a warder in a hospital, and was told early on that he could earn extra money for shaving the patients ($3) so he set about shaving quite a number of men in between his usual round of duties. When he picked up his first pay packet, he was expecting a bonanza...and he got, in total, an extra....$3!!! Ha ha!

Serious though, Bud, I admire your actions. There is a little human compassion in us all.

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