Archive for Beard Liberation Front

More Science Beards of Note

Posted in Beards, The Universe and Stuff with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 30, 2018 by telescoper

Following yesterdays post in response to the news that the Bank of England has released a list of names of the scientists who have been nominated to appear on the new £50 note, I have collected a few more great beards of British science.

If you recall, Beard Liberation Front spokesperson Keith Flett has argued on his blog for Lord Kelvin (William Thomson) who is indeed a worthy candidate, being both a very distinguished scientist and the possessor of a splendid beard:

However, it must be pointed out that Kelvin was just one of many distinguished British scientists to have been hirsute, especially in the Victorian Era. Two that spring immediately to mind are James Prescott Joule (after whom the SI unit of energy is named):

There is also of course James Clerk Maxwell, who formulated the classical theory of electromagnetism:

I posted those three yesterday, but here are some extras.

First, from an older era, there is John Napier (1550-1617) the mathematician and astronomer perhaps most famous for inventing logarithms:

Next is Joseph Swan, noted for the development of the incandescent light bulb who, incidentally, was born in Sunderland (which is in the Midlands).

Then there is engineer, mathematician and physicist Oliver Heaviside

Oliver Lodge is best known for his work on the development of radio communications:

Another well-known hirsute scientist inventor is Scottish-born Alexander Graham Bell, whose strongest association is with the first working telephone system.

Here’s physicist, chemist and physical chemist William Crookes:

And finally in this batch there is astronomer and mathematician John Couch Adams who did not grow a beard until relatively late in life, but whose facial hair definitely deserves recognition:

Anyway, please keep them coming! You can submit other candidates through the comments box. If you include a link to a picture I will update and include in this post. Note, however, that to be eligible the person must: (a) be a scientist; (b) be British; (c) be dead; and (d) not have been on a banknote before. For example, Charles Darwin has previously been on the tenner so he is ruled out and many other famous beards in science are ruled out by virtue of not being British.

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Science Beards of Note

Posted in Beards, The Universe and Stuff with tags , , , , , , , on November 29, 2018 by telescoper

So the Bank of England has released a list of names of the scientists who have been nominated to appear on the new £50 note. In response to this, Beard Liberation Front spokesperson Keith Flett has argued on his blog for Lord Kelvin (William Thomson) who is indeed a worthy candidate, being both a very distinguished scientist and the possessor of a splendid beard:

However, it must be pointed out that Kelvin was just one of many distinguished British scientists to have been hirsute, especially in the Victorian Era. Two that spring immediately to mind are James Prescott Joule (after whom the SI unit of energy is named):

There is also of course James Clerk Maxwell, who formulated the classical theory of electromagnetism:

Anyway, please submit other candidates through the comments box. If you include a link to a picture I will update and include in this post. Note, however, that to be eligible the person must: (a) be a scientist; (b) be British; (c) be dead; and (d) not have been on a banknote before. For example, Charles Darwin has previously been on the tenner so he is ruled out and many other famous beards in science are ruled out by virtue of not being British.

A Good Day

Posted in Beards, Biographical, Football with tags , , , , , , on February 11, 2018 by telescoper

It’s been a good day. First of all I was officially presented with the Beard of Winter 2018 Award by the inestimable Keith Flett (right):

The picture was taken (by Megan Davies) outside The Small Bar in Cardiff after a celebratory tipple.

After that it was down to Cardiff Bay, where the Wales Millennium Centre was resplendent in the winter sunshine for an excellent afternoon performance of Tosca (which I’ll review more fully tomorrow):

And if that wasn’t enough, I emerged from the Opera to find that Newcastle Utd had beaten Manchester Utd in the Premiership, a game I had expected them to lose…

So yes, it’s been a good day..

A Victory for Diversity

Posted in Beards, LGBT with tags , , , , , on May 11, 2014 by telescoper

I didn’t watch the 2014 Eurovision Song Contest last night, but my Twitter feed was full of comments by people who did. That’s how I found out who won!

Conchita

Conchita Wurst, Winner of the 2014 Eurovision Song Contest

I don’t know what the song was like, but that doesn’t matter at all; the Eurovision Song Contest isn’t about the songs at all. What is important is that Conchita Wurst‘s victory sends out a clear message that there is a world out there that is happy to embrace diversity. Interviewed after the voting, Conchita said “I’m just a singer in a fabulous dress, with great hair and a beard”. That sums it all up, really.

I agree wholeheartedly with the official statement of the Beard Liberation Front:

The Beard Liberation Front the informal network of beard wearers has welcomed the win for Austria’s Conchita Wurst in the Eurovision Song Contest as a victory for a diverse Europe over transphobia and pogonophobia.

The BLF has long campaigned for the right of people to be able to dress and appear as they want.

There will no doubt be those who mock Conchita Wurst (original name Thomas Neuwirth), even within the gay community. But it’s important to remember that the Stonewall Riots of 1969 that galvanised the gay rights movement in the United States into action, paving the way for example to Equal Marriage, began as a  fightback against heavy-handed policing that was predominantly led by drag queens. It takes courage to stand up for the right to be different, and in that respect Conchita is an example to inspire us all.

UPDATE: Here’s the official video made in advance of the contest

P.S. I’m pretty sure that this means that Beard of the Year 2014 is now a foregone conclusion….

 

Jermain Jackman & Urban Cheesemaker complete Beard of Spring shortlist

Posted in Beards, Biographical with tags , on April 6, 2014 by telescoper

Well, wonders never cease! I’ve made it onto the ballot form for the 2014 Beard of the Year! I’m only in third place at the moment, though, and already a very long way behind the leader, Oliver Duff (whoever he is). Would you vote for me? Please. Pretty please!

Kmflett's Blog

Beard Liberation Front
PRESS RELEASE 6th April
Contact Keith Flett 07803 167266

Jermain Jackman & Urban Cheesemaker complete Beard of Spring shortlist

The Beard Liberation Front, the network of beard wearers that campaigns against beardism, has said that the final list for the Beard of Spring 2014 Award is now complete with the winner of the Voice Jermain Jackman and urban cheesemaker Philip Wilton from Wildes Cheese.

Both men have distinguished chin beards and both come from north-east London- Jackman from Hackney and Wilton from Tottenham

The poll is now open and the winner will be announced on 19th April.
The Award, one of four seasonal hirsute accolades that lead to the Beard of the Year in December, celebrates the coming of Spring and the growth of beards new and old.

BLF Organiser Keith Flett said the list contains several names who have never been honoured because of their beard…

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Beard of Spring nomination list bristles with Spring promise

Posted in Beards, Biographical with tags , , on March 26, 2014 by telescoper

The other night somebody asked me if I don’t watch TV how do I keep up with current affairs? The answer is, of course, that I don’t. I do however keep up with important things via Twitter. Yesterday, for example, I heard that there’s a possibility that I might make the nomination list for the Beard Liberation Front’s “Beard of Spring”. Since I’ve never been nominated for anything in my entire life, I thought I would offer my readership (Sid and Doris Bonkers) the chance to boost my vote. And if anyone accuses me of blatant self-promotion, all I can say is “Vote for Me!

 

Kmflett's Blog

Beard Liberation Front
PRESS RELEASE 21st March
Contact Keith Flett 07803 167266

Beard of Spring nomination list bristles with Spring promise
The Beard Liberation Front, the network of beard wearers that campaigns against beardism, has said that the nomination list for the Beard of Spring 2014 Award is bristling with Spring promise.

The nominations list is now open to suggestions from the wider public with a poll starting on 5th April and the winner announced on 19th April

The Award one of four seasonal hirsute accolades that leads to the Beard of the Year in December celebrates the coming of Spring and the growth of beards new and old.

BLF Organiser Keith Flett said the initial nomination list contains several names who have never been honoured because of their beard and we are keen to receive further suggestions from the wider public

Beard of Spring nomination list
Moeen Ali, cricketer

View original post 38 more words

Beard Developments

Posted in Beards with tags , , on November 3, 2013 by telescoper

One of the interesting new initiatives here at Sussex University is Sussex Research a new programme for promoting and facilitating interdisciplinary research. The announcement of this new scheme made me think of possibilities of implementing such approaches more widely.

One of the problems facing Sussex University these days is clearly the shortage of beards among academic staff. Since its hirsute heydays in the sixties and seventies the proportion of clean shaven lecturers has increased alarmingly, with corresponding consequences for our position in the international league tables. Only one Head of School has a beard, and not a single member of the Senior Management has any significant facial hair. This is a scandal of major proportions, tantamount to institutional pogonophobia.

Recognizing that in order to return to its former glory the University needs to turn this situation around rapidly, it has decided to introduce a new Beard Development Fund from which funds may be sought to promote the growth of facial hair across all sectors of the University. Such funds might support workshops at which staff can share good practice and form networks with other beard wearers, or to provide training for inexperienced staff and students who are have yet to acquire their first beard, Discussions are also under way with the Beard Liberation Front to provide beard awareness training.

In addition to  the Beard Development Fund there are a range of other initiatives to provide incentives for staff to develop their own portfolio of facial hair. Having previously focussed almost exclusively on teaching and research, promotion panels will now explicitly take hirsuteness into consideration. Moreover, in consideration of borderline candidates, examination boards will be allowed to consider the quality of a student’s beard in deciding the final degree classification.

Female staff and students will be exempt from the new procedures. For the time being.

One a personal level, acknowledging the fundamental importance of beards in the history of Physics, I have produced a detailed three-point guide on Beard Growth for members of my own School, and we shall shortly be running the first ever competition to find MPS Beard of the Year, in which all staff and students in the School will be invited to vote for the winner, i.e. me.

cropped_beardIncidentally, I discovered the other day that Royal Navy Regulations still permit the wearing of beards, as long as they are a “full set” (i.e. beard and moustache joined, not separate). That perhaps explains why someone I met recently described mine (left) as being a “Navy Beard”, and why some have suggested that I resemble Captain Haddock. I’ll do a look-alike as soon as I can procure a sailor’s hat and a pipe…