Saturday, 19 November 2011


Bruce wearing a chicken head mask
We are two-thirds of the way through the month of Movember. Not a spelling mistake, but a name reflecting the increasingly popular initiative to raise awareness of and funding for prostate and testicular cancers, by growing a moustache through the month of November. I like this cause.

Although I am female, I feel little solidarity for the pervasive ladies-only attitude that delights in the discussion of shoes, clothes, bags and Strictly Come Dancing. I don't feel part of the sisterhood that elevates women into a 'special' category and excludes men as somehow of lesser importance. I thoroughly endorse the Pink Ribbon campaign in support of breast cancer, and I will always support the pink-themed women-only 5k and 10k runs, but I really like the fact that for a change, men are doing something that women can't - growing moustaches - and sticking them in our faces. Figuratively and literally.

At the pub there are many unlikely moustaches on display, and at least three of my Facebook friends are taking part. I'm writing about one of these in particular. Let's call him Bruce, for that is his name.

I have known Bruce for more than a quarter of a century. We first met at university (my first time round), did the same degree, and became friends at some point in that first year. It could even have been the first week, but it's too long ago to remember. I don't think I will ever find better friends than those people whom I first met through those wonderful, heady three years at uni. We still see each other, sometimes at New Year, and occasionally at other times, and I have written about several of these occasions on this blog. CERNoise even wrote a post for the blog not that long ago.

Back to Bruce. Some random facts:
  • His origins are proudly Australian.
  • He owned a corkscrew known as the 'wiggle and twist'.
  • He was a skilled playing member of the university tiddlywinks club (I was an unskilled drinking member). 
  • He learned to unicycle with me.
  • He used to be a diver (from diving boards, not sub-aqua) until he hurt his back. Now he cycles a lot and competes in triathlons.
  • He bought me a toaster 25 years ago, and it is still the one I use every day.
  • He is one of the best human beings in the whole world.
Here is a short statement from the man himself:
"This year, I am growing a fine moustache for Movember, which is a charity dedicated to men's health. On average men live less long than women - there is a theory that part of the reason is because men are fundamentally more stupid and fail to go get themselves checked out for diseases like testicular cancer and prostate cancer.

"Having talked to people about this, I reckon this is a pretty good theory backed up by evidence. I propose the following test - if you have to put your reading glasses on to read your iPhone and you stand up to pee, then go see a doctor once a year for a checkup. Works for me!

"Please donate to if you think the tash warrants a small donation to save lives."

Bruce wearing the Mexican-style moustache
And here is his moustache, proudly displayed, and calling out for your contribution to the cause. Go and donate now!

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