Is it Good? Sir Hare

The metrosexual minute, which somehow dovetailed into this hipster era through which we all must endure, has produced its fair share of grooming products for the well-coiffed. But it has created precious few products, of quality, for the non-coiffed among us. Which is to say, for those of us unable to coif because we have no hair.

No doubt sensing my existential head angst, Tony from Sir Hare recently sent me this product for review:


Right away I dug its over-the-top old-timey-ness. The small brown bottle looks like something sold off the back of a traveling snake-oil salesman’s horse cart. Then there’s the monocled, mustachioed, dapper rabbit who looks like he voted for Taft, lending an air of leporidae credibility. The word GENTLEMAN appears in all caps on the side. The back labeling says it’s a “World Famous Head Shaving Oil,”  as if there could ever be one. Sir Hare, says the bottle, “smells like heaven.” Whoever designed and approved this packaging has a wonderful confidence and sense of humor.

Gentleman, it turns out, is one of four brands of Sir Hare, along with Beach Bum, Lumberjack and Purist, which I can only assume is a bottle air. (J/K – it’s not.) One bottle of each will run you $14.99 on the website.

I opened my bottle of Gentleman for a whiff, and it smelled like the olden days, even though I have no idea what the olden days smelled like. There’s a note of tea and also something else — old musical instruments maybe? (Maybe heaven smells like tea and old musical instruments.) In any case, it was both pleasant and manly.

The shower is where I shave. I rubbed a few drops in my head stubble and gave it a rip. Sir Hare performed as advertised, providing a smooth, fragrant, moisturizing shave.

And now the question … the big question … the only one that matters:

Sir Hare: Is it good?

It is.

Sir Hare is good.

This is a truly glorious and shiny day for my people.

For more “Is It Good?” Reviews, go here.

My Oscar Adventure



I didn’t have to go far to have an Oscar adventure today. I was walking Tanner this morning when my German neighbor, a hair and makeup artist, approached me on the sidewalk in a panic.

“I am 10 minutes late to do hair for my Oscar clients, and my car won’t start, and I cannot get the Uber app to work,” she said in on breath.

I had no trouble believing this. She has a classic convertible, and it often takes a while to start in the morning. That car is probably responsible for one-fourth of the smog in the LA area.

“You want a ride?” I asked.

Today is the Super Bowl of the hair and makeup world, and she didn’t hesitate.


I grabbed my keys, scooped a very confused Tanner (um, what about breakfast, dad?) into the car and picked her up. As we sped down Santa Monica I asked who her clients were. She’s working on the folks from Citizenfour, the Edward Snowden documentary. I can’t tell you how happy this made me. She’s also doing hair and makeup for German director Wim Wenders, whose work I must now familiarize myself with. She was very kind and very thankful. As repayment, she offered to cut my hair, which sent both of us into hysterics.

Now, I’m not saying I saved the Oscars today. And I’m not saying that if Citizenfour wins and so many people become aware that their government is acting illegally that we finally elect the right folks to run this country and peace breaks out globally that I have helped save the world today. Let’s leave that for the historians to decide. What I can say is that you don’t get a ton of chances to help your neighbors in LA, because we’re an independent and private lot, and it was nice to give her a hand.

(Tanner survived the trip and got his breakfast and is now resting comfortably on the couch.)

One-Footed Trip to Southeast Asia A Success

A few weeks ago I wrote about how I sustained a foot injury days before my wife Jen and me were to leave for a big vacation in Southeast Asia. I (quite heroically) said “Eff it,” and we went. I am so glad we did.

My walking cast, which somehow attained the nickname “Das Boot”, caused me to hobble for much of the trip, but it didn’t keep us from doing anything we had planned.

I chronicled much of our trip on Instagram and Facebook, the photos and captions of which I shared are below. And if you want to know more about Hong Kong, I published this travel guide on

But who cares about that? Let’s just get to the damn pictures.

Me and Raymond

Wheels up in San Francisco with my man Raymond. (Raymond is not as amused.)

A photo posted by Joe Donatelli (@joedonatelli) on


Eff It – We’re Going

Monday, January 19, 2015
On Sunday morning the swelling in my foot started going down, and it felt like five Christmases. Nintendo Christmases from the 1980s. The best kind of Christmases. The foot felt about 20 percent better. I still went to acupuncture, took my meds, drank my juices and ate more tendon soup. (It’s the only meat-type substance I have eaten in days. I feel like I don’t even know who I am anymore.)

Monday morning it felt about 10 percent better than the day before. For the first time since last Tuesday I was mobile enough that, if I had to work, I could have had a normal workday, albeit while wearing my Iron Man Boot.

Went to the doctor on Monday afternoon, and he looked at the bruise that remained, saw that the swelling had gone down and did not seem horrified by the thought that I could soon be on a 20-hour flight before spending 11 days in foreign lands. He said I’d want to keep the boot on for 7-10 days and stay on the meds and ease my way back into shoes. We still don’t know if it’s gout or bursitis/inflammation, and the foot’s not totally healed, and we’ve probably had better ideas, but we decided: We’re going. The Griswolds are going to Southeast Asia!

Follow me at for pics.

I’ll be blogging as well. (A lot, if my foot goes wacko again.)

Direct all prayers to St. Julia of Corsica, the patron saint of feet.

– @joedonatelli


My Day of Doing Everything Possible So We Can Go to Asia

Saturday, January 17, 2015
If my foot isn’t healthy enough for us to go to Asia on Tuesday (see yesterday’s post if those words make no sense to you), it won’t be for lack of trying.

Friday night was a disaster. I tried to help Jen research some things for our trip, but the pain was such that I could not concentrate and retired to an Epsom salt foot soak and then bed. I felt terrible about abandoning the planning session, but the pain, even while prone on the couch, was intense—like being hit in the foot with a giant hammer that was made out of the trophy assemblage of lesser hammers it had bested. I went to bed with the sincere hope that Saturday would be a turnaround day.

I got up Saturday, feeling well-rested. Took my meds, drank a lot of cherry juice and carrot juice, which are supposed to help, gulped down water, avoided meat and cheese and booze, took oregano oil supplements and rested most of the day, only leaving the house for acupuncture.

It was my first time doing acupuncture. Acupuncture, for those of you who don’t trade medical advice at Whole Foods, is the stimulation of specific points along the skin using thin needles. I went to one who came highly recommended. She was great.

Treatment by acupuncture

She asked me some questions about my health. I answered honestly. She asked to see my tongue. I stuck it out. (Whatever heals my wheel, man.) I laid down on a cushioned massage table with my pant legs rolled up. After washing her hands she stuck a few dozen pins at strategic points in my ears, hands, legs and feet. None of them hurt more than a pinch. She checked my tongue repeatedly. Each time I stuck it out I secretly hoped she found my tongue impressive, the kind of tongue she could brag about to her acupuncturist friends. “You should have seen this guy I had on Saturday,” I pictured her saying. “He had the Michael Jordan of tongues.” Then the other acupuncturists would stare into their glasses of wine jealously.

When she was done pinning me and inspecting my tongue, she turned down the lights. Something about the combination of enduring the novel trauma (microscopic as it was) of being pricked repeatedly and then the lights going down set my body in a deep, comfortable ease. I relaxed, nodding off for a few minutes here and there. I laid on the table, undisturbed, for between 20-30 minutes. When the lights came back on I felt rested. I can see why people do it. You feel good afterwards.

I didn’t see or feel any immediate results, but I didn’t expect there to be any. I see acupuncture as another of the things that is going to help—not the single thing that will make it all better.

My acupuncturist wondered if the problem might be my tendon and recommended that I have tendon pho for lunch. I grabbed some on the way home. When you suffer a non-life-threatening injury, everyone has advice, confirming what I have long believed–that most people want to be helpful and useful and we are not, on the whole, an awful species. We’re more nurse than criminal, most of us. Last night my mom called and rattled off about a half-dozen home remedies for gout and bursitis. People have been sending me tips on Facebook and sending my wife texts. My wife took our dog outside this morning, and when a neighbor asked how my foot was, an Orthodox Jew who happened to be walking by at that exact moment recommended I take a certain medicine without breaking stride.

As of Saturday night, my mobility is the same as 24 hours ago. I’m still wearing a walking boot and moving slowly. I’ll have another update tomorrow.



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