During November each year, MovemberMovember is responsible for the sprouting of moustaches on thousands of men's faces in the U.S. and around the world. With their Mo's these men are helping to raise awareness and funds for men's health issues, specifically prostate and testicular cancer initiatives. Movember got its start in Melbourne, Australia in 2003.
"A few of the founders were out riding skateboards, having a beer or two, talking about '80's fashion and how the moustache never really came back in vogue. They left that day with a challenge issued. They got about 30 people to do it that year to basically grow a moustache for 30 days," says J.J. Owen who is the Head of Grassroots Engagement for Movember USA.
In 2008 a colleague of J.J.'s mentioned something to him about moustaches and Movember and a short time later he got some friends together and decided to take action.
"My roommate's mom at the time had cancer so we wanted to do something cancer related and we were both facially gifted as far as moustache growth so we were just like 'Let's do this'," says J.J..
Since it's inception Movember has raised over 300 million dollars and has grown to become a global movement inspiring more than 1.9 million Mo Bros and Mo Sistas to participate with formal campaigns all around the world. You may be asking how it is exactly that a moustache is supposed to spark conversation and spread awareness of men's health issues. Well, the theory behind the 'stache is that people will see someone sporting this manly mane and ask them about it which will hopefully then lead to a conversation about the cause. And, that conversation is sometimes very difficult to have.
"It's more important for that guy who's rockin' a moustache who's 20 something, 30 something, to have the talk with their dad or their uncle about men's health because those guys are the ones that are getting checked for prostate cancer at that moment and that's the conversation that's typically not happening. I've had Mo Bros tell me that their dad's feel like they're protecting them by not telling them," says J.J..
Prostate and testicular cancer were not top of mind for Lee Martineau until it hit home.
"My grandfather had been diagnosed with prostate cancer 12 years ago and when he was, my uncle and father got checked out because when it's in the genes you want to get examined. My uncle had it at the same time so they were both fighting it and treating it and my father did not and then 8 years later he was getting his annual check-up and then his PSA count was high and went in and he, too, had prostate cancer."
This Movember I will be joining the ranks of the moustachioed man. Yes, I've been blessed with the 'I can grow a massive beard and if I don't trim it on a regular basis I totally look like a hobo', gene. And, yes, I'm pretty sure that growing a moustache will make me look like a freak. That's why my plan was to grow that hobo beard and then trim it into a 'stache but I out found out that the rules of Movember are actually pretty strict.
"You grow just a moustache for 30 days. No beards and no goatees because nobody's gonna give you a high five for that. If it connects to the sideburns that's a beard and if it connects under your chin that's a goatee and those are disqualified," says J.J..
So get out there men, and, maybe even some women and grow your Mo big and grow your Mo proud, knowing that you will be one of many Mo Bros and Mo Sistas that will be helping to change the face of men's health.
35 or older? Single? Want kids? Think about freezing your eggs
Rachel Belle | March 24, 2015 5:42 pmEgg freezing is nothing new. But it has reentered the conversation now that companies like Facebook and Apple are offering to pay up to $20,000 for their female employees to do it. But what is new is the technology. Three years ago Seattle Reproductive Medicine started using new, advanced reproductive technology that ensures that most of the eggs are still in good shape when they're thawed out. Learn how much it costs and if it works.
The Coffinmaker of Vashon Island
Rachel Belle | March 23, 2015 6:24 pmIn 2005, landscaper Marcus Daly watched the Pope's funeral with wonder: his body was being carried in a plain, simple, wooden coffin. This inspired Marcus to eventually open Marian Caskets, and hand build simple, honest pine coffins and carve inscriptions into the wood.
Mistaken bachelor party invitee trying to pay for strangers' honeymoon
Jamie Skorheim | March 23, 2015 1:06 pmIt all started with a misdirected email and now a Burien man is raising funds to send a couple he's never met on a honeymoon.
Mariners ball girl tryouts bring local softball players to the mound
Rachel Belle | March 20, 2015 5:51 pmSixty local high school and college softball players showed their fielding skills at Safeco Field on Thursday, each one hoping to make it as one of the dozen ball girls the team is hiring.
Listen to the original theme song for The Ron & Don Show
March 20, 2015 2:33 pmBoyhood friends Ron Upshaw and Don O'Neill are celebrating 19 years on the radio together.
Video: Darrington community grateful for outpouring of support
Stephanie Klein | March 20, 2015 1:41 pmTo honor searchers, people who donated shovels, and anyone else who helped support the community of Darrington after the March 2014 mudslide in Oso, residents made a video to show their gratitude.
Internal memo on Starbucks 'Race Together' campaign surfaces
March 20, 2015 12:43 pmA document believed to be an internal memo from Starbucks to its baristas on how to handle their 'Race Together' campaign is making the rounds.
Who should cover memorial costs for worker killed on 520 bridge?
Jamie Skorheim | March 19, 2015 1:29 pmFamily and friends of the man killed at the 520 bridge have been trying to raise funds for his memorial, but should they be the only ones responsible for that cost?
Habitat for Humanity director wishes 'hot place in hell' for thieves who steal from charities
Jamie Skorheim | March 18, 2015 4:23 pmA recent theft has drawn a lot of ire as the thieves' target was a charity building homes for families in Pierce County.
Celebrate 'Twin Peaks' new season by taking Snoqualmie's 'Twin Peaks' tour
Rachel Belle | March 17, 2015 3:29 pmDavid Lynch's cult TV show 'Twin Peaks' is set to have a brand new season in 2016. To celebrate, the Salish Lodge is offering a special 'Twin Peaks' package that includes coffee and cherry pie. Rachel Belle took the 'Twin Peaks' tour with a few mega fans who offer up some insider tips and facts.
Can anything be done to slow Seattle's skyrocketing rents?
Josh Kerns | March 17, 2015 1:34 pmCalling Seattle's soaring rents an "emergency" driving countless numbers of people from their homes, a coalition of activists has issued an ambitious report outlining a wide-ranging list of suggestions they hope will pressure the mayor and City Council to take action on affordable housing.
Friends, family provide glimpse of man killed in 520 construction fall
Jamie Skorheim | March 17, 2015 12:59 pmFriends and relatives describe the 34-year-old carpenter fatally injured in a fall at the 520 bridge construction project as an enthusiastic, fearless man who became interested in carpentry as a child.
Salk: No knowledge, no problem for March Madness bracket success
Jamie Skorheim | March 17, 2015 5:35 amMillions of Americans will be filling out their March Madness brackets this week, but what if you know little about college basketball?
Edith Macefield's Ballard home goes up for auction, but nobody bids
Rachel Belle | March 13, 2015 5:38 pmEdith Macefield, and her 108 year old house, made national headlines in 2006, when she refused to sell it to developers, who offered her a million dollars for the property. They had no choice but to build their huge shopping center, The Ballard Blocks, around her. Now the house is in disarray, its owner filed for bankruptcy and the house was foreclosed upon. Today, an auction was held but none of the five interested parties bid.
Police search for suspect who lit homeless man on fire
Jamie Skorheim | March 13, 2015 5:35 pmA homeless man is in critical condition after witnesses found him on fire Thursday evening.