Who Should Be Goulet?

09/28/2010 10:33 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

The American Mustache Institute (AMI) has begun accepting nominations for the highly anticipated 2010 "Robert Goulet Memorial Mustached American of the Year," the award TIME magazine, the "NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams," physicist Stephen Hawking, and High Times magazine have suggested is on par with the Nobel Prize for Peace.

The award, of course, recognizes the person who has best represented or contributed to the Mustached American community during the past year. Keep in mind, however, that this high honor is not about the "best" mustache, as some would surmise. No, it's about the best man or woman who happens to favor lower nose foliage, yet has represented their people with great honor and dignity.

Named for the late entertainer who passed in October 2007, it's an award for the everyman: the teacher, the community leader, the celebrity, the dwarf, the politician or the athlete who harnesses the immense power of the lower nose garden.

Nominations will be accepted on the AMI website until Friday, Oct. 8. On Oct. 11, the pool will be streamlined to a worthy group of finalists selected by AMI's certified mustache-ologists for voting by the general public. The winner will be announced later this fall, most likely at 'Stache Bash 2010, on December 4 in St. Louis.

Last year, the second winner of the annual award was taken home by Arizona Diamondbacks standout Mustached American reliever Clay Zavada, who came to 'Stache Bash 2009 and accepted his honor with great fanfare.

This year, however, may be a different story altogether.

Certainly, having been thought of as washed up while wearing no mustache as recently as last season, pitcher Carl Pavano of the Minnesota Twins has once again demonstrated there is no more potent performance enhancer on the athletic playing field than a mustache. U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, the first Mustached American in the position since Francis Biddle in 1946, remains a quality candidate, as does presidential adviser David Axelrod.

But who else is there?

Certainly Stanley Cup-winning Chicago Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville (yes, he's not American but deserving none the less). A non-celebrity Mustached American fireman or teacher who's made a difference in their community? A psychotic Florida minister?

Who will be "Goulet" in 2010? It remains to be seen.

But many great choices grace our landscape, and we look forward as the choices is made by the lip sweater-adoring American public during the coming months.