Wednesday, January 24, 2007

preliminary thoughts

When Zach first called me with the idea of organizing the “March of the Mustache” campaign I was 20,000 ft in the air and on my way to deliver a series of lectures on proper mustache maintenance to a group of professors at Berkeley. Initially I laughed, not out of distaste toward the idea, but because of Zach’s attempt to get a nearly impossible project off the ground. You see, this sort of campaign has been attempted a couple of times in world history.
In 1941 on January 21 when anti-Jewish riots broke out in Romania, a group of Roman Legionnaires sported Hitler-like mustaches while they hunted for Jews, participated in violent pogroms, and desecrated homes and stores. This movement grew to about 400 members and the aim of the group was to get the whole town to grow mustaches reminiscent of the Leader of the Nazi Party. But the community couldn’t get behind it because of its violent nature, so it failed.
Then again in circa 1920’s in a small village off the eastern coast of Columbia a generation of an indigenous people group discovered that they were the first to grow facial hair. But their mustaches came in the thickest. Because they had no razors or sharp stones to shave their faces, all of the teenagers had sweet staches. The only problem with this is that the group had no communication with anyone outside of the island and the movement ended when later on down the line the rest of the facial hair came in on these guys.
So what am I trying to say? The two most important dynamics in a movement of this proportion is that the community gets behind it and that communication be of apple-pie order. If the community is not involved and cannot get behind the ideology of the movement then it will surely fail. And if the message is not spread by word of mouth or if there is a lack of communication between mustacheteers and infidels, then straightway, the movement will decline.

1 comment:

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