Introducing a new award to the We is ND pages, The Utley. This fine distinction has no parameters, qualifications or requirements necessary and carries absolutely no East or West Coast bias. Dedicated to the indomitable spirit of Mike Utley and his thumb-up acknowledgment to Detroit Lions fans, an Utley is conferred upon an individual/team/organization/movement for a deserving bit of sportsmanship, good play, or meritorious acclaim that might not find its way into Stuart Scott's Boo-Yah roll call. Basically, it rewards the unremarkably remarkable, the "stop to smell the roses" stuff that gets lost amidst the bling and hoopla that tends to consume big time sports.
Remember the Jason McElwain story? His accomplishments are certainly worthy of at least a double Utley and would be a fitting first bestowal, but that story's been played out. We gotta start with something fresh and original, something distinct with flavor. That said, the inaugural Utley of the Week is a touch off the wall, but, then again, so is this site.
I came across this article (and it's accompanying gallery) during a recent surf and was smitten. You mean to tell me there's people who care enough to rally public opinion to bring the 'stache back into our culture's good graces? That is Good News.
You may be asking yourself- what possible relevance does facial growth have to sports? Unbeknownst until recently, I discovered a subculture, much like professional eating and the Great Outdoor Games, where the growing gets a little competitive. We all have a friend who beats everyone to the 5 o'clock shadow by noon, but can they do this? And if you need inspiration, here's a celebrity montage of well-coiffed mustachios from some of our most beloved characters.
Believe it or not, there's serious follicle festivities at work at the New York City Beard & Mustache Championships. And if your mane is the main event domestically, you just might be a contender for the World Beard Championships.
If you think you've got what it takes, perhaps you should get in touch with the founder and self-appointed captain of the Beard Team USA, Phil Olsen. I'm awe-struck that a national circuit for this sort of thing even exists. His blog offers as in-depth a look into competitive beard growing as you'll find. And what's more American than growing your God-given hair to the length of your choice and "splitting hairs" over it?
For that, the "Americans For More Mustaches And Beards" movement gets an Utley.