Surviving another close shave…

There are few activities more irresistible to the red-blooded American male than the acquisition of the latest retail razor technology.

This fascination with shaving instruments begins at about age 12 and ends roughly three hours after we are pronounced dead.

There was a time when manly men removed whiskers and simultaneously learned emergency first aid by using what was known as a straight razor. This device consisted of a handle and a large, folding blade capable of beheading a wild boar.

Then along came the safety razor with disposable blades and the race was on.

Ever since, razor manufacturers have been coming out with a new, improved model every six months or so and millions of us guys purchase them, hoping in vain to finally obtain the fastest, smoothest shave with the coolest-looking razor ever conceived (at least within the past six months).

First there was one blade and then there were two and three and four blades and now – voila! – there’s POWER.


The latest shaving innovation offered to those of us with perpetually recurrent facial hair is called the M3 POWER and, like all its predecessors, it’s irresistible if you’re of the male persuasion. It’s new. You gotta have it.

There was no passing up the M3 POWER when I encountered one a few days ago during an otherwise uneventful supermarket sortie. One look at the sleek, glowing green-accented box and I could positively feel the stubble sprouting on my chin.

This baby clearly appealed to all my basic male instincts.

First of all, it had POWER.

Who among us, guys, can resist POWER?

Plus, it was dressed up with a fluorescent green reminiscent of a 1970s Plymouth Hemi ‘Cuda.

Who among us, guys, can resist a Hemi ‘Cuda?

Best of all, the package was bilingual – in French, no less – thus appealing to our suave, sophisticated sides.

“Le premiere systeme de rasage a micropulsations de Gilette, por une experience totalement nouvelle…”


After all, France is the place where real men settle petty differences with swords, consume heroic quantities of cognac and bellow things like ‘Sacre bleu!” for no apparent reason.

Let’s face it, guys, if anyone knows blades, it’s the French.

(Can you say guillotine? I knew you could…)

Admittedly, this latest shaving innovation costs about 15 bucks and outwardly doesn’t look a whole lot different from any number of $4.95 disposable blade shavers (Hemi ‘Cuda green not withstanding).

But inside it’s got POWER, courtesy of an alkaline battery that, with the push of a shiny green button, causes the razor to go scampering across your face with an audible whir like a tiny chainsaw.

And who among us, guys, can resist a chainsaw?

Sure, the M3 POWER is a little pricey, but it should last a lifetime – or at least until somebody comes out with a solar-powered razor that incorporates an AM-FM radio.

Until then, amigos, it’s, like, l’homme propose, et Dieu dispose…

Originally published June 20, 2004

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