Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Isaac Asimov's Sideburns

Yesterday I came across a couple pictures of Isaac Asimov as I was writing my post about The Naked Sun.  This picture is actually on the back of one of the vintage editions The Wife bought me.  Taken sometime around 1952, I'd guess, he seems every bit the mid-century young gentleman.

It was the first time I'd seen him without his characteristic sideburns.  Most folks are probably more familiar with the portrait below:

To which I say, man, what a neat looking old man.

I've tried the facial hair thing, and while it does lend a certain maturity and gravitas, it can't help but leave one looking scruffy and ill-groomed. 

It surprises me that sideburns aren't more popular.  You can use them to signal your masculinity, wisdom, and experience, and you can still kiss your wife without scratching up her face.


  1. My hubby had a goatee beard, and I LOVE it. When he first starts to grow it in it is scraggley for a week or so, and then it is just dashing. After about two weeks, it is full and the hair becomes must softer and no so bristly.

    I think sideburns go a bum rap in the 70's...ala the Elvis look. Things come and go...who knows what will come around again.

  2. My husband has had sideburns since long before I met him--maybe even since he could start growing facial hair. He also has a handlebar mustache, which started as a joke, but has been around for the past five years! I like men with a little hair on the face--but it does take upkeep!

  3. I've always been rather fond of Isaac Asimov's mutton chops - they look fantastic and they shout to the world that he's not afraid of a little facial hair.