It’s November: thoughts turn to the onset of winter, misty mornings, Guy Fawkes and bonfires. The observant amongst you may also notice that the month brings with it an unusual increase in the number of moustaches being proudly worn around the place – and all in the name of charity, for this is the month of Movember.
Moustaches are strange things: beards make sense, they mean you don’t have to shave, but moustaches, if anything, make remaining otherwise clean shaven more important to better show off your hirsute top lip. Nonetheless, they used to be all the rage – with men anyway, I think women have generally always shunned them. In more recent years, however, they have become somewhat less fashionable, in the UK at least.
But, for one month only, the popularity returns as Movember encourages men from all over the world to risk itchiness and ridicule in an attempt to grow a manly moustache over 30 days to raise money and awareness for men’s health charities, specifically prostate cancer and testicular cancer.
Men are way behind the women here – they have been raising awareness and money for women’s health charities for ages with things like the Race for Life. Finally now the men are catching up, and the good thing is that growing a moustache is a far less strenuous activity than running.
Movember began in Melbourne, Australia in 2004 and by 2007 it had gone international. You sign up to become a Mo Bro and must begin the 1st of Movember with a clean shaven face. For the entire month each Mo Bro must grow and groom a moustache, supported by the women in his life – the Mo Sistas.
According to the Movember website, “In 2011, over 854,000 Mo Bros and Mo Sistas around the world got on board, raising GBP 79.3 million”. That’s pretty impressive.
I have not participated in Movember before. I did attempt to grow a moustache once, for a stag do, but it was a poor, feeble affair and was not popular with the wife. Nonetheless, in a good cause, I decided to give it another go. It is now more than half way through the month, or the ‘point of Mo return’, and my moustache is at least now clearly visible. It is growing reasonably in length but is somewhat lacking in thickness, density and general lustre.
Hopefully by the end of the month it will look something like a decent moustache, and I’ll have raised a few quid to make it all worthwhile. So, if you see me in the next couple of weeks, remember: it is perfectly okay to laugh at my moustache, but it is only polite to pay for the privilege first!
If you too are growing a Mo – good luck to you. If you’re not, then find someone who is and give them some cash. If you don’t know anyone, I would be delighted to receive your generosity at http://mobro.co/darrelkirby