Fund-raisers with stiff upper lips have close shave in name of charity

PUBLISHED : Friday, 03 October, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 03 October, 2008, 12:00am

These days, moustaches are perhaps not the cool, manly statement they were in the days of Hollywood actor Burt Reynolds. But there are still some 'tash' fans around. For example, our very own veteran singer George 'Ah Lam' Lam Chi-cheung is never seen without one, although his is kind of comforting. Apparently, the only one who has seen him tash-naked is his wife, after he had a bit of a close shave.

To get to the point, 25 tasheteers from Hong Kong (just males) had their lips stripped bare of all hirsute accoutrements on Wednesday evening at the Peel Fresco Music Lounge in Central as the first step in a charity competition.

It's the brainchild of teacher John Gangi. 'We started it about six years ago in Kyrgyzstan when I was an American Peace Corp volunteer. Thirty guys [took part], all of whom have continued the tradition around the world. It is amusing, but at the same time we really do it as a way to carry on a lost tradition and to help support a good cause. Last year we pulled in US$10,000.'

Gangi said that this year the money was being raised for Room To Read, an organisation that publishes books and helps build schools around the region in poor areas. Their new moustaches would be judged on November 2, he said.

'There will be four awards. We will be looking at style and growth, there will also be a category for celebrity lookalike and one for the follically challenged. We'll have a catwalk called the tash-off for the guys to walk up and down.'

If you would like to sponsor a moustache for Room To Read, contact Gangi on 9814 2955.

By the way, one of the longest moustaches ever produced was that of Ramsingh Chauhan, 43, who held the Indian record for longest moustache - at 1.96 metres, as measured in Mumbai in 1996. Ramsingh, whose tash was longer than he was tall, was a member of a princely Rajasthan family. His favourite saying at the time was: 'A man is incomplete without a moustache.'