I heard this story for the first time yesterday and somehow it made me think of this thread. http://en.wikipedia....during_OlympicsIconic mustache during Olympics
In an era when other swimmers, male and female, were shaving body hair, he swam with a mustache. When asked why he initially grew one he stated "I grew the mustache because a coach in college said I couldn't grow one."
Spitz said he originally grew the mustache as a form of rebellion against the clean-cut look imposed on him in college. “It took a long time to grow,” he said.
It took four months to grow, but Spitz was proud of it, he decided the mustache was a "good-luck piece."
Mark Spitz is quoted as saying, "When I went to the Olympics, I had every intention of shaving the mustache off, but I realized I was getting so many comments about it—and everybody was talking about it—that I decided to keep it. I had some fun with a Russian coach who asked me if my mustache slowed me down. I said, 'No, as a matter of fact, it deflects water away from my mouth, allows my rear end to rise and make me bullet-shaped in the water, and that's what had allowed me to swim so great.' He's translating as fast as he can for the other coaches, and the following year every Russian male swimmer had a mustache."