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Homefront: I'd love to chat, but I really mustache
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Homefront: I'd love to chat, but I really mustache

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The mustache motif starts even before you get to the front door.

At the corner of my daughter and son-in-law's house there stands, next to the foundation, a granite boulder into which has been engraved their names, the date of their marriage and a big handlebar mustache.


Once inside, the cuteness escalates. You step on a mustache-shaped rug, sit down next to a mustache-shaped throw pillow, drink coffee from a mustache-emblazoned mug. 

Obviously mustaches have some appeal in the general populace or Kelly's friends wouldn't have found all these items that they bought and gave as gifts once they caught on that she had adopted the mustache as a motif.

But where and when did this popularity arise?

I googled the question, but did not find a definitive answer. I did, however, learn more about real mustaches than I thought possible.

The earliest documented usage of mustaches, for example, can be traced to Iron Age Celts. Also:

• Mustache popularity in the West peaked in the 1880s and 1890s coinciding with a popularity in the military virtues of the day. In fact, there was a time when the British army required mustaches.

• Mustache cups and spoons were made to protect the mustache while drinking or eating soup.

• The longest mustache was 14 feet long and belonged to a man in India.  It was measured on the set of an Italian TV show in Rome in 2010. 

• Mustaches of different shapes have names. The Dali mustache is narrow with long points and is named after artist Salvador Dali. The Chevron goes out to the edges of the upper lip but no further, like Freddie Mercury and Tom Selleck. The horseshoe is what Hulk Hogan wears. The toothbrush, Adolf Hitler. The pencil, Clark Gable. The walrus, Mark Twain and John Bolton.

But in my research I did not find why they have surfaced as a motif to the point that one can buy shower curtains, duct tape, baby pacifiers, cuff links, wrapping paper and bedding, all with mustaches.

For Kelly, the collecting started with a Mumford & Sons concert in Dixon, Illinois, in 2012 called Gentlemen of the Road. The commemorative T-shirt she bought featured a man with a handlebar mustache and a high-top hat.

She bought a few mustache items at a later concert in Canton, Ohio, and from there "it just grew on its own, in part because I have amazing friends who would just get stuff for me," she said. "And I know who all of them are from, too.

"It's fun. It's just fun. And I love them all."

While the motif may be popular, the real thing is not. At least it wasn't in 2014 when an editor for Gentleman's Quarterly told The New York Times that mustaches simply have not made a comeback.

Beards are everywhere, but mustaches not so much. 

Meanwhile, Kelly's stash of staches grows.

One of her favorites that she bought as part of a Halloween costume is a fuzzy mustache that extends beyond her face that is so "ungodly" that it makes everyone laugh.

But her most favorite? The white gold mustache ring she wears on her left ring finger. Her engagement ring. Yes, Josef Wolf, her fiancé now husband, had it custom made at Revell Jewelers.

That's love. 


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I caught wind of the possibility sometime during the winter: our son was thinking of competing in an Ironman triathlon. I pretended I didn’t hear.

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