As I was sitting in my bed, wondering if I was going to get out of it before the next Chelsea game, I thought back to middle school. I don't know why, but I'm glad I did, because it led to me remembering that they gave us yearbooks at my middle school, which led to me remembering what I did with the faces of classmates in those yearbooks, which led to this...
Since I've often been the sarcastic cynic of various thread discussions or the overly-didactic poster, I decided it was about time I channel the sarcasm, cynicism, and pedagogy into my lighter side. Lord knows we need it now.
Breaking News: Chelsea players aim for run, take up superstition...
It's been well-documented that athletes around the world have superstitions. Some have specific ways that they warm-up for games, others listen to the same music to achieve a certain mental state, loads have confessed to having a lucky item that they must have with them for every match-up. One phenomenon that is wonderful to behold is the occasional facial hair craze that takes over baseball teams (think '04 Red Sox and '10 Giants).
I'm not sure if that's what inspired this turn of events, but nevertheless, the Chelsea FC players, following the lead of "Captain, Leader, Legend" John Terry have taken to the growth of mustaches in the hopes that it might prove the stroke of good luck the Blues have lacked this season.
And a gentleman to boot - via sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net
Frank Lampard, ever the team player, even when it forces him to show his age (e.g. shifting suddenly into a deeper CM role), was inclined to participate, but had asked the cameras to focus on the younger lads.
No flash photography, pleeeeease? - via sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.net
Ashley Cole, on the other hand, felt the look really suited him and was happy to pose for the cameras with an old kit. "I look good," he mused out loud, and as usual, every other person in the world saw it differently.
Who even knew that glasses came in the "Ashley Cole" tint? - via sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net
Naturally, number one goalkeeper Petr Cech, and toast of the league Juan Mata were happy to get behind something designed to boost team morale and increase confidence. They really took the look seriously.
Ain't nobody dope as me, I'm just so fresh and (so fresh and so clean clean) - via sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net
Don't you think I'm so sexy? I'm just so fresh and (so fresh and so clean clean) - via sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.net
Young Brazilian Oscar got in on the action as well, but since he hadn't quite hit puberty yet, he had the Chelsea staff affix an exact replica of Terry's wonder-stache. A quick poll of fans outside the training ground revealed that a whopping 83% of supporters still found the wunderkind "dreamy" in appearance.
It's just so itchy... - via sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net
He wasn't the only youngster to sport the upper-lip fuzz; Marko Marin, Victor Moses, and Kevin De Bruyne were all spotted with growths of their own. In fact, it appeared that they'd been working on their's for some time now.
Here we can see Marin's in the Sparta Prague match.
Seriously, you have no idea the self-discipline it took to not put the Adolf tuft up there. I'm super mature now. - via sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.net
Victor Moses had this photo taken shortly after joining up with the club, although it was demanded that he shave it immediately to make him more aerodynamic.
The Last Emperor of Manchuria - via sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.net
Kevin De Bruyne has had a full blown caterpillar under his nose since the summer, but because of the hair color, it's nearly impossible to see unless caught at just the right angle. Luckily, one of our techs was able to dig up and enhance this photo.
The camera adds 10 pounds; the mustache adds 10 years - via sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net
Not to be outdone by the young boys, resident storyteller Paulo Ferreira sought us out to show us he was still part of the team. We were unable to confirm that this wasn't washable marker.
It looks like he used the last vestiges of his strength to grow this - via sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.net
And how could the perpetually misfiring Fernando Torres pass up on a chance to change his luck? The striker was actually seen sporting two different styles in the 2 hours our crew was on site, going with a longer bleached look that he somehow morphed into a short, dark, more British style while we weren't looking. No change in the quality of his performance was reported with either manifestation.
"First, I do this" - via sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net
"Then, maybe I do this" - via sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net
Of course, the most impressive presentations came from centre-backs Gary Cahill and David Luiz, who were repeatedly caught comparing whisker lengths rather than focusing on the runs of attacking players in a training exercise. David Luiz may have had the heftier of the two lip warmers when the day's session began, but by the time our team left the facility, Gary had replaced him as follicle-mass leader.
"I like it looks I do this, geezers!"- via sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net
"I'm a child of the 80s, to be fair" - via sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net
Back-up keeper Ross Turnbull took a bit of stick from the lads though. "Seriously, you had one simple task," and "we only asked for ONE decent try at it," were the cries heard emanating from around the field as Ross exited the locker room. He was subsequently booed off the training field and later gave us a brief interview. "I'm not sure why they were yelling at me," he told us, forcing a smile to hide watering eyes, "I just do my best."
"What'd I do wrong?" - via sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.net
There was another poignant moment on the training field, but this happened with the U-12 side. "I thought maybe if I grew it, they might..." said winger Florent Malouda, his voice trailing off as his misty eyes fixed on the horizon.
"Why won't you love me?" - via sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.net
Still, it was good to see that every member of the squad was trying their best to contribute to the movement. Around the world, we've noticed some other former Chelsea players and staff wearing new face-comforters of their own. Perhaps a show of support?
"What, this? I've always had this." - via sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.net
What's wrong with this picture? The jersey he's wearing. - via sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net
I can be your hero, baby. I can kiss away the pain (but it might scratch a little). - via sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.net
In light of these furry faces springing up all over the country, and even the world, it was a surprise to some that one man went about his business with a countenance newly-deprived of hair.
Who has no idea what he's doing and something in his eye? This guy. - via timestoday.info
Well done, you.