November is a great time of year. The temperatures dip, we break out the sweaters, and inevitably the white flakes start falling from the sky. For the second consecutive year, I’m also donating my upper lip to the Movember Movement, a fundraising initiative aimed at raising awareness for prostate and testicular cancer research. Last year, it was the trendy thing to do. This year, my motives are different. Here are three reasons why I’m doing Movember:
1 – If not me, who? Movember offers some startling statistics on their website about the impact of male cancers around the world. 1 in 6 men will be diagnosed with either prostate or testicular cancer in their lifetime; this year alone, more than 270,000 men will be diagnosed and 28,000 of those very men will meet an early grave. Growing a ‘stache shows that I’m standing behind that 16.67% of mankind who will one day suffer from this senseless scenario. If I don’t grow, who will?
2 – Personal Connections. It was news to me that a good friend of mine is a testicular cancer survivor. He actually shared this bit of intimate health history during Movember last year. He’s healthy, happy, and a huge football fan. He’s just one of millions of men who took on cancer, and ripped open a can of whoop ass. A colleague of mine just yesterday shared with me that her potential son-in-law is a survivor, though he’s recently been thrust back into the ring with the disease and ready to rumble another 12 rounds as necessary. A man I interviewed 8 years ago before he retired after 54 years of coaching is a prostate cancer survivor- today’s he’s going strong and volunteering with the same team he led to dozens of championships. Personal connections, known and unknown, motivate me to keep on growing.
3 – It Ain’t Pretty, But It Sure Feels Awesome. Facial hair really isn’t something I can grow and look good with. Sideburns have always been my thing. I used to work in broadcasting, where it was frowned upon by the establishment to have facial hair. Movember gives me an outlet to stick it to the “man” who used to prevent me from flexing my follicular fortitude. Last year, I was told I looked like Burt Reynolds, Wade Boggs and Ron Burgandy. Those are some mighty masculine men, so I took each insult as a compliment. This year, I’m going all in – trucker style ‘stache with a spot of soul below. Eight days in – what do you think?
And perhaps the best part of this all was that I was able to energize a great friend of mine to not only take part in the Movember Movement, but he shaved off his goatee of many years and recruited several of his own coworkers to do the same. He’s currently crushing his fundraising efforts and is making a HUGE difference by sparking conversations about cancer awareness. The power of Movember is stronger than ever and inspires me to want to change the face of men’s health for years to come.
If you can, please consider helping out however you can – http://mobro.co/davesniadak