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Ralphie had his Red Rider, Pablo has his Braun Cool Tec

December 26, 2013 - Paul Giannamore
Ralphie in “A Christmas Story” wanted his Red Rider BB-gun.

I wanted my Braun Cool Tec this year.

And like Ralphie, I developed all kinds of plans and schemes with which to convince The Boss to consider this out-of-the-ordinary, kind of expensive for us Christmas gift.

It all began to hatch somewhere in October when, for about the third or fourth straight month in a row, I managed to rip off a strip of skin while grooming my bald head.

I started considering alternatives as I stood there, wiping shaving foam turned pink from my corpuscles blending in.

I read and read some more on the Internet, researching. It’s The Boss who taught me that a well-researched purchase is a good purchase. It took her two years to buy The Drummer a digital camera for his high school graduation. And then the smartphone revolution rendered the purchase kind of obsolete anyway.

It took her a year to pick out the best television I’ve ever seen.

I had less than four or five weeks to settle on my razor.

And I found the Braun Cool Tec to be the perfect model for me, with its NASA-tech cooling strip that actually makes the head and the skin drop by several degrees during the shave, alleviating electric razor burn. It was unusual and, pardon the pun, cool.

I read reviews. I sorted through the whiners and the complainers and the little kids who have been shaving for all of three years, as well as the know-it-alls who, at age 30, think they know all there is to know about facial hair care. Many of ‘em grow beards, I’ve noticed, or claim that spending a gozillion dollars for a beaver tail and a straight razor is the way to go. Yah, sure.

And there were the fanboys who swear by the Philips Norelco-style rotary head over the Braun style foil shavers. And Braun wisely passed out what must have been 1,000 of these razors to test faces who posted reviews everywhere from Walgreens to

After awhile, it just all seemed like football fans arguing over who had the best team. I wanted this uber-cooling Braun.

And when my brother was home at Thanksgiving, I dropped it into conversation. I started showing The Boss pictures of it. I read night after night about the razor.

And then I held my breath. And on Christmas morning, I unwrapped a plain brown box. The only giveaway was the address label from Braun.

I charged it, I set up the cleaning station. I waited. I kept finding excuses to go to the bathroom (“Gee, I drank about a half gallon of water today…”)

Finally, it was my brother who blurted out, Ralphie style, “I want a Braun Cool Tec Razor with the cooling strip and the cleaning station and charger.” Followed by, in his own voice, “You’ll shave your head off, kid.” I didn’t think I had been that obvious.

Until I was on my third head-shave of the day.

No blood. No rash. No pain. And I didn’t shave my head off, kid.

Just a hefty piece of high-tech German engineering in the palm of my right hand.

Unlike Ralphie, nobody had to stick their tongue to a flagpole or beat up Scut Farkus.

And my head is as smooth as a baby’s bott-- eerrrr, well, skin anyway.

Thanks, Kathy.


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