To say that former Louisa native Josh Black’s beard is a hair above the rest would be a ridiculous and inexcusable exploitation of a pun.
It would also be an understatement.
Since a razor last grazed his face on June 1, 2012, the 28-year-old Black’s appearance has morphed from featuring the tame whiskers of a corporate beard to an impressive, full-grown beard that one can only describe as Bunyan-esque.
Now, simple strolls down the aisles at supermarkets and runs through the park draw the occasionally uncomfortable attention of curious onlookers.
“It’s a conversation starter, for sure,” Black said.
Black said the decision to let his whiskers grow was based on of the insistence of his wife, Megan, who requested he grow a fuller beard after their marriage on June 29, 2012. Whether it was a case of getting an inch and taking it a mile, Black said he was more than willing to capitalize on the opportunity.
“It was something she asked me to do,” Black said. “Being newly married, I said “Yes Dear!’”
It wasn’t long before Black discovered the previously unknown world of beard leagues.
A few taverns near his Glen Allen home held monthly events and Black decided to join in. It was only a matter of weeks before Black moved from an admittedly hesitant newcomer to competitor as he stood before panels of judges while participating in testosterone-charged beard tournaments.
In the 13 competitions Black has participated since he started competing in January, his whiskers have placed in 11 of the events and won seven.
To read the entire story, see the Nov. 28 edition of The Central Virginian.