Gentlemen, refer to the photo on the right. If you're going to sport a 'stache, take it seriously. Respect it. Give thanks to your patron saints: Reynolds, Selleck, various baseball players of the early '80s. And don't assume it's hilarious to the rest of the world. The whole retro mustache thing is old news, but it's still fueling gags about misplaced 70s machismo. In fact, it's pretty much a requirement if you're starring in a new comedy movie. Sam Rockwell's mustachioed girls' basketball coach in the "The Winning Season" is the latest example.
When did a hairy lip become the sight gag equivalent of the "Take my wife" joke? Repetition has rendered it totally unfunny. The irony? Deader than a gray hair. And what's worse, it's made a mockery of everything the mustache represents: unapologetic butch. Regardless of sexual orientation, (from Burt to the Village People) the look signaled spiked testosterone levels and untamed bedroom stallion-ism. The post-millennial reincarnation mocks the message and the men who invented it. Self-deprecation fuels male mojo these days. Even former muscle man Mark Wahlberg, who years ago stood straight-faced, shirtless with his pants down, is turning to comedy to round out his career.
That's because men aren't allowed to be macho -- without a wink. They can't look you in the eye and say they'll rock your world, without following up with a 'just kidding.' Know who could? This guy on the right. He could also pull off a handlebar without so much as a smirk. It's not an easy thing to pull off and if I were a guy (with an intentional and moderately fuller) mustache, I'm sure I couldn't pull it off either. But if you're going to grow it, show it like a man. Leave the tickled-pink twinkle at home but don't act like you forgot your follicular accomplishment. Yeah, it's there. You're a man. You don't have to apologize for bursting with bristles. You've got the soul of a walrus, the shell of a --. Oh forget it, those days are done.