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Monday, 23 July 2012

Shaving a Shin

No, no, you're not mis-reading the title, nor have I mis-typed it.  It does say Shaving a Shin.

I like to think of myself as an efficient person.

I like to plan everything I can in advance, so as to minimise energy and time expenditure.  This characteristic is based on both personal attributes (laziness) and learned behaviour (getting my arse kicked for missing a deadline).
NOTE: This not being lazy, merely efficient

It's one of the reasons for my love of computers.  If you have enough knowledge to manipulate them, they can save huge amounts of time and boredom.

For example, I routinely program macros into my M$ Word or Excel documents to automate routine repetitive tasks.  I set up systems which are designed to reduce my input to achieve desired goals.  I've even written a program to work out which lottery number I'm going to lose money on.

All in the main endeavour of the Great God Efficiency.

When I'm working on the never-ending and thankless task of setting relief, I move into ├╝berefficient mode. Rolls are printed out the day before, lists of relievers are matched up to requirements, and reliever timetables are prepared and printed.  This leaves me with spare time in the morning for last-minute changes, epidemics of The Lurgie, and most importantly, a cup of refreshing tea.

Even in my personal life I try to be efficient.
Routine tasks like ironing, washing and drying clothes, vacuuming, rubbish removal and recycling, picking up after m'son are all set in a habitual timetable, so it's all semi-automatic. 

(BTW, a Hint to all domestic Gods and Goddesses out there.  Listening to an audiobook on an iPod whilst ironing removes a great deal of the boredom, but my Beloved did ask why I wear industrial-grade ear muffs whilst vacuuming; obvious, I can't hear the subtle nuances in vocal production of a favourite novel while the bloody Dyson screams it's song of extraction and micro-particulate collection)
Efficient, but BLOODY NOISY

Even my personal hygiene follows the same theme.

Beard trimming takes place every Sunday
Beard trimming and haircutting takes place every other Sunday. (As I've only a little hair left, a quick run over my scalp keeps it nice and tidy and removes any chance of the dreaded Hairover occuring)
Nose and ear hair trimming takes place every 4th Sunday.
Pubic hair trimming takes place every Blue Moon.

When I trim the nether bits

A tip I picked up in the Army as regards to shaving stands me in good stead.
I should like to note that even though I wear a beard,  tonsorial tidiness demands that the other areas sprouting bristly fuzz need to be planed every day (every third day if on holiday, or every 14th day if my Beloved is away)

I shave in the shower before going to bed.
Again in the demands of efficiency, I've installed an anti-steam mirror in the shower cubicle, from which I hang a wet razor, so I can shave quickly and cleanly while being pummelled by luxuriant streams of hot water.  All of the bristles removed by the razor blades are quickly flushed away, and I can them emerge, pink-skinned and smooth cheeked to meet the world in pristine glory.

However, my usual procedure came to a crashing halt yesterday.

We'd had a lovely dinner of roast pork, delightfully prepared as always by my Beloved, redolent of exotic herbs and spices, and served with creamy and buttery mashed potatoes.  The pork had been cooked to perfection, but the texture was a bit different from normal, and my Beloved informed me it was a cut known in Scotland as Hough.

See!  I'm not making this up.  The word HOUGH does exist.  (BUT IT'S BEEF My Dear)
In the shower as usual, all bits thoroughly scrubbed with the loofa and the strong antiseptic soap. (No details, I'm a shy retiring sort of person)
Now time to shave.


Where' s my bloody razor?

It wasn't hanging on the mirror hook where I'd left it the day before.  There was a distinctly vacant razor-shaped hole in the continuum.


Rinsed off, turned off the water, stepped out of the shower, trying to find a replacement razor in the bathroom cupboard.
Back into shower, water back on, EEEAAAARRRGGGGHHH.  I'd forgotten the bloody water always starts ice-cold before the thermostatic valve cuts in.

Finally emerged in a slightly irate mood, with a desire to find out the truth about the missing razor.  I was pretty sure it wasn't m'son, as he prefers to use an electric Remington (on the few occasions he actually shaves at all.  What the hell does the current younger generation think it's doing.  Bristly stubble is NOT attractive (unless it's on an Italian lady of generous proportions and an indeterminate age) The current semi-unshaven look just makes me want to give them all a good scrubbing with the trusty wire brush and Dettol. )

It just looks like dirt.

This meant that it was probably my Beloved who had removed my razor from its appointed place in the universe.  This also meant that I'd have to inquire in a more gentle manner than I was at present inclined to do, as
  1. I wanted to eat the next day
  2. I did not want to spend the night either in the spare bedroom or the floor of the garage.

 So I enquired gently of my beloved if she had happened upon my razor in her normal perambulations.  (It sounds so much better than "Where's my bloody razor?"
Then she told me the awful truth.
"Oh your razor?" she said with a terrible innocence.
"I used it to shave my Hough"
Now I am tending towards a little deafness as I reach my advancing years, and I wasn't entirely sure what she was on about.
"What the f*ck What did you say my Darling?" (who the hell was Huff?)
"I said that I used to shave the Hough" she repeated.
"Why?" I enquired, carefully keeping any tones of incredulity out of what I realised was a developing scream.
"It was hairy" was the reasonable reply.
After a few more gentle enquiries, I discovered that:
  1. A Hough was the cut of meat she described as a Shin of Pork (My Beloved was completely wrong here.  Hough in Scotland does describe the cut of Shin, but usually referring to Beef, hence Hough Soup, a rare and wondrous delicacy)
  2. A Hough of Pork has bits of skin adhering to it.
  3. The skin had quite a lot of bristles still sticking out of it.
  4. My Beloved had used my bloody razor to give it a quick shave before cooking it (The Pork, not my razor)
"Don't worry" she said, "I did wash the razor first"

After I used this pic to illustrate the post, I wondered "Return the stool where?"  "I hope to God it's the toilet bowl.
"Thank heavens for small mercies" I thought, keeping a fixed grin on my face.  At least she didn't put it back on the hook after the "Shaving of the Shin", unlike the previous time she had used MY razor to trim certain areas (I'm not entirely sure which areas she alluded to.  I didn't ask.  I didn't want to know.  Really.)
I discovered she had used it when the much abused blades began to dig large and bloody chunks out of my chin.  God knows what her hair is made of, but I suspect some alloy of Steel and Titanium.

Then I realised that I had just partaken of a meal composed mainly of bits of meat which had been thoroughly stroked by my razor.  A razor which has those embedded soap strips incorporated into its design.

Now I knew what that extra flavour had been.


Sometimes I just wonder how the female brain really works, if at all.

I wonder if m'son will lend me his Remington (The electric razor, not the 12 gauge).

Oh, Ok, that'll do.


  1. Hilarious! Never a dull moment in the TSB household, just dull blades :-)

    1. Again Dear Yonks, I'm glad my pain gives you amusement.
      And yes the blades were dull, until I got the new razor, which also as usual, planed of a few thousand skin cells as well as the bristles.

    2. Wish I'd come up with Di's comment. Quite perfect.

    3. I agree Suze, it was quite apposite.

      Cutting, but apposite. *sob*

  2. Didn't you guess from the little squares of toilet paper stuck to the joint where she had cut it whilst shaving?

    1. Ha bloody Ha. Seriously, I didn't see any bits of paper in the gravy, but some of the pumpkin bits were a bit fibrous.

  3. Pigs and humans have similar skin, so I'm sure your wife knew what she was doing. I hope you let that beard grow 2 months before Xmas so you can play Santa. Efficiency is all about thinking ahead.

    1. No, sorry, she didn't know what she as doing, and as she's never shaved me before, how would she know how it would feel.

      I hope you're not suggesting that she's been shaving other blokes?

      A little word to the wise,Gorilla Bananas, just don't mention the S word. Every bloody year half the kids in the school and most of the teachers try to entice me into a bloody silly red suit. Christmas here in NZ is hot enough to give a person in a fuzzy red suit heatstroke, so I don't. Ever. 'Nuff said.

      AND I'm not bloody jolly.

  4. Oh I'd drive you completely insane if you come to stay with me for a while...I do nothing in a routine... except for my morning visit to the loo and you dont want to know about that..
    I wear a beard ever since a horrible experience with my daughter and my razor.. Noticing it was dull and full of long hair I asked who'd shaved the dog, she piped up that she'd used my razor to shave her tender she always did.
    Quote: " you bloody what?" (I dont use a razor any more)

    1. Correct, I don't want to know about that.

      Ah, I see you've also suffered form the what I would describe as the "Bloody selfish woman syndrome"

      I hope you told her to pluck them out with a tweezer next time.

  5. So hilarious - I cannot believe she thought that was the thing to do!!!

    1. Thank you, once again I'm so gratified that my pain brings pleasure to others.

      It just exemplifies the basic unreality that exists in the female "brain".

      I reckon the bit that's got "practical ability" in a bloke is filled with either foundation or lipstick.

  6. None of my macros ever work. They always blow-up. You have a marketable skill, my friend!

    10 points for working an umlaut into your post.

    Here's a tip that really works: If you dry off the blade when you're done shaving, the blade will NEVER DULL. A real $$$ saver. Don't know how it'll effect the flavor of your shaved meat, though.

    1. Most of my macros are pretty simple, and don't forget, I've been writing code for 25 years.

      Gee, thanks, do I get a gold star as well? Seriously, I try and promote the use of foreign characters to increase the use of the Alt key.

      Good idea. I'll also store it in a pyramid.

  7. I'm surprised that someone who sounds quite handy in the kitchen, would do such a silly thing.

    Mind you, I managed to set a chocolate cake alight the other day, so even the greats have off days.

    1. I know, it beats the hell out of me why she did it. Who know, next time she might want to shave a King Edward.

      That's a first. I've never heard of a burning chocolate cake. What was it. Too many candles?

  8. I agree about those Dysons... awkward and noisy.

  9. I see you are reading L.E. Modessit, Jr.: good stuff.

    1. Oops, thats a bit out of date, I finished Scholar last month and then finished Princeps last week.
      Neither was, I think, as strong as the first Imager Portfolio trilogy.

      I do enjoy his books based on Chaos versus Order.

    2. My favorite books of his are Adiamante and Gravity Dreams. I also liked his ghost novels.

  10. Morning TSB.
    Another popular post.
    Well done.

    1. Morning Richard,
      Thank you, I try and share the pain.

  11. Bet you're glad you don't live here in the US where we have Thanksgiving with whole pigs and turkeys!

    1. I shudder at the thought.

      Actually I'm not sure that one litle disposable razor would do the job.

  12. I absolutely love your blog and find almost all of your post's to be precisely what I'm looking for (nah!). I wouldn't mind doing a couple of biblical posts if you like, and can elaborate on all subjects known to man, much better than the anonymous dickhead above can. I can't help you lose weight, but I might be able to get you into Heaven - no promises though. I mean, you are Scottish.

  13. Good, you've deleted Mr Anon. Though, as the Son of God I know that his real name is Simon Bates.

  14. "I reckon the bit that's got "practical ability" in a bloke is filled with either foundation or lipstick."

    Or a nice shiraz and the memory of Daniel Craig's shower scene in 'Tomb Raider'. :)

    1. If that's what yturns you on, go for it.

      Who's Daniel Craig?

  15. Hello TSB,
    We are doing battle today. unknown to many, the Olympics competition starts today in my hometown Cardiff. They are singing the anthems as I type. GB -v- New Zealand women's football and 2 days before the opening ceremony! Thought you might be interested :-)

    1. Thanks Di, and I certainly appreciate your thoughtfulness.

      But I must admit, true to my essential Twistedness, I have zero interest in the Olympics, apart from a rather vague interest in how they're going to stuff it up.

  16. For once, I am speechless. And nauseous. Yet strangely amused.

    1. That's not like you.

      Being speechless i mean, not nauseated.

      Glad I could keep you amused.

  17. Just a little chloroform.~Mary

  18. Hi Mary, and thanks for leaving a comment.


    Is this for me or the pig?
    or God forbid,
    to be used on my Beloved if she thinks of such a thing again?


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