Manscaping on Birthright

Breaking down grooming habits among the men on the trip

A lot of guys on this Birthright trip trim their chests. Joe sometimes trims with a five blade, Matt trims regularly with a one, and Ross uses the separate trimming attachment. They’re all idiots.

Let me explain. Spring break, senior year: Acapulco. I was staring my shoulder hair in the face, in the mirror, and decided it was time to take action. To quote Dashboard Confessional, my “hair [was] everywhere.”

I recruited my equally hirsute college roomie, took a trip to Target, bought a home waxing kit and the first season of Dawson’s Creek, because we were lonely.

Together we waxed our shoulders. When the bleeding subsided, I was looking down the barrel of two pristine deltoids.

Acapulco was great, but it had nothing to do with my clean shoulders. It had everything to do with my winning personality, and willingness to buy friendship. Which is why I’ll never wax, shave, Nair, tweeze, or whittle again.

The first time the shirts came off during Birthright Israel, when we took a dip while hiking in the Ein Gede nature preserve, the conversation quickly turned to manscaping. As much as it hurt to be objectified by a group of women, I was ready to defend my manhood.

Matt’s chest had a five o’clock shadow, Ross’ chest looked like a fleshy mushroom (fine, with washboard abs), and don’t get me started on Joe. I’m a red, and maybe the heat made me delusional, but I’m pretty sure my au natural look made the women swoon. Mark my words, the days of manscaping are over. We’re returning to the glory days of Burt Reynolds, Tom Selleck, and now, Zach Goldbaum.