Hussein saunters from the entrance of Healy Mac Irish Bar & Restaurant to the table inside where I am seated with Jessica, Wati and Chow Kah. He is donned in a brown short-sleeved shirt and rust-coloured khaki pants.
“Holy cow!” Wati (pix above) exclaims, flicking her gaze from the plates of finger food on the table to Hussein’s face. “Why’re you wearing a beard?”
Hussein plops into a chair beside Wati. “Busy! Too busy to shave!” He takes a squid ring from a plate and pops it into his mouth.
Chow Kah raises a brow. “My goodness, a beard makes a man looks like he’s homeless!”
“Not exactly right.” Jessica crosses her legs, causing all male eyes in the restaurant to bulge as her garter belts are exposed in the slit of her dress. “Stubble makes a man appear sexy!”
“Oh really?” Hussein smirks. “Proof?” He nudges Wati and takes a sip of Sangria through a straw from her glass.
Jessica tucks curls of stray hair behind her ears. “Researchers at the University of New South Wales did a study on whether beards are attractive to women." She props an elbow on the table (pix above). "A group of women were shown photographs of men who were clean-shaven, lightly or heavily stubbled and fully bearded. They were asked to rate how attractive they find the different types of beard. Faces with heavy stubble were rated as most attractive and heavy beards, light stubble and clean-shaven faces were less attractive. The results were published in Evolution and Human Behavior in May 2013 issue.”
“No wonder!” Hussein jerks upright, his eyes sparkling like black opals.
“No wonder what?” Wati spears a spring roll and bites off a piece.
“Just now, a pretty woman blew a kiss at me! She must have found my stubbled face sexy!”
“What woman?” Wati jerks a thumb to her left. “That Mat Salleh woman over there? The one holding a beer bottle? (pix below)” Her face is flushed with jealousy.
Chow Kah hikes his chin and sneers. “Bearded men may look sexy but they won’t go to heaven.”
“Why you say that?” I run a finger down the glass of my mango margarita for want of something to do.
A smile twists on Chow Kah's lips. “I’ve never seen any pictures of angels with beards before!”
“Actually, bearded men look lecherous!" Jessica's lips curl in disgust. "They’re also lecherous!”
I flick my gaze at Jessica. “Why you say that?”
"A bad experience." A wrinkle crimps her nose. “Last week, I was in a dance club in Mont Kiara. It was almost 3 am, and I just came out of the toilet.” A pause as she looks round the table. “I walked up to a bearded bouncer and asked to see the manager. Eyes filled with lust, he lifted my hands to his beard and asked why. I said I’ve a message for the manager. The bearded man started to kiss my hands, then he sucked my fingers. All in full view of the other patrons. What message, he asked. I said that in the ladies toilet, there’s no toilet paper and no liquid soap.”
Wati (pix above) releases a little-girl giggle, rolls her eyes upward and slaps her thighs. “Actually, there’re contradicting survey results with beards. In collaboration with Tinder, Gillette conducted a new survey to find out whether bearded guys are preferred by women. The results are interesting.”
“What’s Tinder?” I ask.
“An online dating App.”
“You can read the results on shavetest dot com.” Wati casts a side glance at Hussein. “Generally, girls preferred well-groomed men to scruffy men, according to the survey.”