That's a good story, must be a cool old guy. I also hated shaving, seeing it as a chore until maybe five years ago. Whether I had a shave was determined by a threshold of what I hated more, the itchy hair or the act of shaving. I had used DE razors many years ago and just remembered that they were cheap to use when cartridges or disposables where getting expensive and seemingly less quality. I got into SE this time rather than DE razors as I considered SE having more potential to develop with narrower blades and therefore narrower head caps. It was hard to find a modern SE razor that did everything I wanted so I had to put some work into sorting that out. Injector razors are close in design shape, but limited to injector blades."I HATE shaving"... those 3 words said to an older gentleman almost 2 years ago got me sold on wet shaving with a DE safety razor.
My dad "taught" me to shave by giving me an electric shaver, and not a terribly nice one at that. A few times I tried the Gillette multiblades with Gillette gel and hated it. Messy, hated the greasy feeling, and the terrible smell of the gel. The Gillette razor also chewed up my face and irritated my skin something awful. I picked up a Braun shaver in the early 2000s and had been using that and a beard trimmer ever since...but hated the chore of shaving.
...until I uttered those 3 words to that gentleman who told me that wet shaving with a DE razor would change my mind. He had been shaving with a DE all his life. And he was right. So far, most everything I've bought has been from MaggardRazors.com. They gave me a ton of great advice as a newbie and guided me to what I needed.
Razor: Merkur 34C HD
Blades: Feather blades have become my favorite. Despite what people say, I think I've only nicked myself once with a Feather, but far more with duller blades.
Brush: Maggard synthetic
Lather Brothers' Flamingo Trance
Dr Jon's Anne Bonney
Dr Jon's Hydra
Henri et Victoria La Poire Francaise
Maggard's Orange Menthol
Maggard's London Barbershop
Alum Block for aftershave
I completely disagree, but I also live in an area with hard water. The soap makes all the difference with my shave, including how wet or dry I make the lather. The aforementioned Arko doesn't work well for me, but the others do a great job.
I also find that time-wise, I can do a wet-shave in the same time or faster than shaving with my Braun. I also get FAR less irritation
The old man who turned me onto wet shaving told me, best way to improve my shave was soap #1, razor #2, pre-shave #3. YMMV.
*Arko -- I bought this on a whim due to its cheap price and somewhat controversial reputation. I'm on the hate-it side. It smells like a urinal cake and performs probably as bad as one. My better half also hates the smell... much to my entertainment. I'll periodically open it and hide it in random places. Makes for some good clean fun.
I'm not sure what you completely disagree with exactly as I made no absolute statement about using water. Hot/cold, hard/soft water can definitely act as a lubricant, however, whether shaving personally with water is going to work out is totally a YMMV consideration for sure. As you maybe have found out, there can be varying results even with dedicated shaving soaps/creams.
The 34C is a great razor so I'm told by DE users. Seems Maggard have given you good advice. Feather blades are definitely one of my favourites. I have so many different blade brands and variations, I collect them out of interest. As an SE shaver, other than snapped or ready-made half DE blades, I also use injector, B20 and AC blades every so often. AC blades are interesting but I don't see the use of the extra width in practical terms.
Happy shaving and pranking the partner with the Arko.