Tag Archives: Motor Neuron Disease

…In Which I Go Soak My Head

I didn’t even know the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge was a ‘thing’ until my sister nominated me (read ‘bullied me into it’).

But it’s for a good cause – I had a friend whose mother died of ALS, so I’d love to see some progress in the fight against this degenerative and 100% fatal disease. If you haven’t heard of ALS or Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (also known as ‘Lou Gehrig’s Disease’ in North America and ‘Motor Neuron Disease’ in the UK), there’s more info at the ALS Association’s website:  http://www.alsa.org.

I was slightly distracted by the thought of dousing myself with ice water on video, so I wasn’t quite as coherent as I had hoped when I reeled off my little blurb.  I forgot to mention that I’ll donate as well because, while it may give some folks great satisfaction to watch me make a fool of myself, my brain freeze won’t benefit the ALS Association directly.

I’m not sure how good the audio will be, so here’s a short summary of what I was babbling about:

The rules of the challenge are that after you take your ice shower, you get to nominate some other deserving folks.  (Apparently my sister is harbouring some unresolved hostilities that we should probably address.)  If your victims friends choose to accept the challenge, they have to do it within 24 hours and post a video as proof.

I didn’t name names since I’m posting here on my blog, but if you’re just spoiling for an excuse to tell your friends to go soak their heads, consider this your official challenge… and don’t forget you have to do it yourself before you get to nominate anybody else!  (If you do, post a link to your video in the comments – I’d love to see it.)

But first you’ll need to stop laughing at me…

P.S. I’ve read a lot of criticism about this challenge.  People decry it because ALS is not a common disease so we should give to other charities that will benefit more of the population/it’s a fad and the people who participate are somehow morally and intellectually inferior to those who sit back and criticize/the ALS society doesn’t allocate a large enough portion of donations to research and patient support so the money isn’t being used efficiently/millions of people are dying of war and starvation and disease in other countries and it’s our fault because we should have donated there instead/yadda, yadda. 

I agree that it’s preferable to channel our donations to causes where the funds will benefit the most people and be used most effectively, but I don’t believe this challenge is somehow taking donations away from other charitable causes.  It’s a one-time thing, and people are impulsively donating.  That won’t prevent them from donating to the causes they regularly support, but it may get some people who don’t regularly donate to do so… and if it builds a culture of giving, that seems like a good thing.  I donate to a bunch of charities regularly, so I doubt I’ll bring about the apocalypse by dumping a bucket of ice water over my head and sending a few bucks to ALSA.  And yes, it’s a silly challenge, but how often do grown-ups get to be silly in public?  (Well, unless they’re me.  I’m silly most of the time.)  Anyway, I figured it’s good fun for a good cause.

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