Tricky T's and the Adventure of the Chest Waxing Crazy Person

Wednesday, January 6, 2010 | 2 Comment(s)

I find that the secret to a good blog, and really the secret to any burgeoning relationship, is to let your crazy out a little at a time.  If you let it all out at once, people are either frightened of you (not good for readership) or feel that they know you completely (not good for intrigue).  If you don't let any of it out, people will either find you boring (not good for readership) or withholding (good for intrigue, bad for readership).  You also come across as a moving statue--which admittedly sounds SUPER intriguing to me (Golem much?).  Additionally, by slowly letting out drippings of the full fledged crazy that we ALL have, you remind people that humans are weird and unpredictable and do stuff that is as fucked up as the stuff you do when you're alone and no one's around.   And, more specific to me, I continue to make the case that I am one of these unpredictable beings who is worthy of you learning and reading more about.  (Shit.  I just realized that is IS a vanity blog.  uber sigh.)

So today I've decided it's a great time (now that I'm relaxed and it's too overcast for snorkeling) for another "reveal" (i need to watch less Project Runway evidently).  Thankfully, i've covered the tracks of my crazy with a hilarious side-story.  Cunning, i know.

I am a trickatilamaniac.  What sounds like a super-power or sexual deviancy is actually a somewhat rare condition in which a person derives satisfaction from plucking hair out of their body.  There are varying degrees of trickatilamania (Tricky-T's for short?), and in some cases it can affect one's every day life (for a mediumly graphic example click here).  This is particularly evident in cases where people focus on the hair on their head.  Thankfully, my neurosis over going bald (or my old neurosis seeing as I've met my goal of having hair at 30) has kept my hands away from my head.  In other words, there are very few ways you would ever realize this fun fact about me.

 I should also clarify some points about Tricky-T's.

1.  The satisfaction that one gets from pulling hairs is not (to my knowledge) sexual in nature.  It is more of a gratification similar to popping a zit (is this just me still) or finally successfully threading a needle.
2.  There is nothing worse to a person with Tricky-T's then saying, "Why don't you just stop," or some other, less inquisitive version of that phrase.  The whole point of what's going on here is that the person can't find a way to stop.  The picking itself is so satisfying that you lose sight of the negative consequences until afterward (think alcoholism for a frame of reference).
3.  Symptoms can be intensified by stress or even boredom.  I once, while trapped at my desk in an office doing nothing all day in Japan, managed to pluck out half of one of my eyebrows.  I can't tell if I was happy to be in a culture at the time that would never bring such a thing up in conversation or not--since i knew they certainly had no compunction about talking behind one's back (it's considered the more polite way to handle things [yes, culture shock is a real thing]).

One of the biggest clues that I am a Tricky-T can be found on my chest.  Over the years I have picked and picked at certain spots of chest-hair that the follicles no longer produce hair.  My fingers are like little lasers surgically removing my body hair from the root with constant diligence.  As I said before, the negative consequences of this picking usually aren't realized until afterward.  As such, I didn't know when I started picking (can't remember when that was--but I was a little matt) that the hair would no longer grow back if I picked at it consistently.  If I had known, I'm sure I would have devised a more systematic picking structure that would have left me with hair in the shape of the Mona Lisa or an "S" in an upside-down triangle.   Unfortunately, not knowing in advance, the result of all of this picking is that I have what slightly resembles Steve Carell's Man-o-Lantern, from The 40-Year Old Virgin (see picture).

While it isn't quite that extreme or well defined, even i must admit that is does bare (pun?) a certain resemblance.  And as this is a constant reminder of what i have done to myself, you can imagine that it is also a source of shame and embarrassment for me.  And while it doesn't really prevent me from going shirtless (my lack of giving a shit outweighs any shame I might have [and they say apathy can't be productive]), it's not something that can happily push to the back recesses of my mind either.

So today, for the second time, I took the reins of this problem and decided to do something about it.  I waxed my chest.  Cunningly disguised in a hilarious story--just like i said i would.

The first time I did this I was also here in St. John, and it was instigated by 2 of my best friends (who were here with me) buying the wax and strips at the pharmacy while I was food shopping.  This scenario tumbled down the peer-pressure hill and ended in one slick upper back (not mine), one smoooooth upper ass-crack and lower back (also not mine), and one silky smooth chest (mine).  I have a lot of chest hair though, so I should clarify that I did not, in fact, wax it clean, but more cleared out the middle.  The best example i can give is of a silverbacked gorilla, with hair all over and below his belly-button, but excepting his bare breast plate in the middle.  I am a silverback.

I will also admit that part of the incentive for doing this came from the well publicized pain that waxing was said to elicit.  I have a pretty high threshold for pain (but not for temperature strangely), and I have been wondering where "waxing" fit on the pain scale. 

The Results.  While i refuse to put a picture of my waxed chest on the internet (enjoy the 'used strips' pic), I will say that having what could be considered a "pattern of chest hair" instead of sporadic golf greens, is immensely gratifying.  While the slickness and smoothness themselves don't hold much appeal to me (perhaps to my gf?), the feeling of normalcy in this domain is undeniably relaxing. 

The Process.  Much more fun to talk about.  Today I waxed for the second time using the leftover wax from our first episode down here.  And this time I did it to myself.  That means I had to yank, against the grain (found that rule out the hard way), with enough force to pull the hairs out of my chest.  This is, psychologically speaking, a mini version of stabbing yourself in the leg.  The pain, however, is much less.  If you have areas of light hair growth (think a 14-year old's poop stain mustache), waxing is not more painful then peeling off a well attached band-aid.  If you have areas of heavy hair growth (a leg or hipster's muttonchops [i would fucking love to wax me some of those]), the pain is considerably greater.  At worst, its the sting of someone slapping you at full speed straight on with an open hand.  It stings.  But, much like the spice of Wasabi, it goes away right after.  I have areas that fall into both categories on my chest, and I experienced the entire 1-7 scale of self slapping pain. The experience is survivable, but unpleasant enough that I haven't ever been remotely tempted to go the full-Monty on my chest.  It's also painful enough for me to give props to the ladies who clean up their downstairs parts with this stuff (props) (oh that reminds me of a story--another time).  Ladies, we (the people that see your nether regions) appreciate it. 

If this is a vanity blog, im glad mine has a chest-waxing chapter.


  1. Matti, this makes me smile beatifically. I'm so proud. But I am also somewhat surprised at how you downplayed your courage in shaving your nuts with a straight-razor. It may be a vanity blog, but you're oh so modest.

  2. A self referential vanity blog at that.