No, it’s true.
But thanks to a challenge issued by Adam Sendek at Long Awkward Pause, my plans to watch the sunset with my wife on the porch while drinking something icy and alcoholic turned into something else entirely.
Except for the icy part. There was actually plenty of that.
By now, most of you have seen at least one of ALS Ice Bucket Challenge videos circulating the Internet, during which [Spoiler Alert!] someone gets a bucket of ice water dumped on their head. What started out as a celebrities-only challenge to raise money for ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease) research, has grown exponentially to include thousands of non-celebrities, all of whom are united in hope that, some day, everyone on the planet will be able to trace themselves back to Kevin Bacon.
In all seriousness, ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) is a terrible, debilitating disease that leads to total paralysis while the mind remains sharp. Imagine being buried alive, except in your own body. There is no cure and only limited treatment for those afflicted — the majority of whom die within two to five years of being diagnosed. Since the Ice Bucket Challenge began in June, it has raised more than $13 million dollars for ALS research. Last year, the organization’s entire annual fundraising efforts peaked at $1.7 million. For the 30,000 people diagnosed with the disease, the Ice Bucket Challenge is more than a wacky stunt. It’s a show of support — and a voice for those who, in many cases, can no longer speak for themselves.
Even if, after getting icy water dumped on them, those supportive voices are screaming like little girls.
Because of this, and an unfortunate incident several years ago when someone mistook my screaming for that of a third-grade girl after falling into the lake during my daughter’s field trip, I felt an obligation to answer Adam’s
name calling friendly challenge on Facebook…
Given that the recipient only has 24 hours to complete the challenge, I immediately swung into action by coming up with a plan to procrastinate for as long as possible. That plan was quickly scrapped once my son pointed out that, since I didn’t receive the challenge until early in the afternoon, prime ice-dumping time (when temperatures are at their warmest) was going to evaporate by dusk. This conversation happened as I was taking him to his first day of football practice… which gave me an IDEA!
Once it became clear my idea to fake a back spasm and substitute my son for the challenge wasn’t going to fly, I had another idea, which didn’t inspire fireworks because it involved actually dumping ice water on my head. My son, however, looked like this…
Why the big smile? Because it involved him doing the dumping, along with his entire football squad. That said, I’ve certainly had better ideas before, like the Rodeo Commode…
However, none of those ideas were as good as supporting ALS research while, simultaneously, strengthening our father-son bond by giving him permission to dump ice water over my head in front of his entire team and coaching staff. In fact, my idea was apparently so good that my wife and oldest son volunteered to record the challenge and even CARRY THE ICE WATER! With the help of Siuslaw High School’s JV football squad, which was almost a little TOO enthusiastic, I was able to meet the challenge before dusk…
I want to thank Adam for including me in his challenge, and the Viking JV football squad. Next, I’d like to pass this challenge along to my friends and fellow bloggers Michelle at MamaMick and Ross Murray at Drinking Tips for Teens, as well as Chris DeVoss at Long Awkward Pause — and not just because it rhymes.
Even though I completed the challenge, I still plan to send off the full $100 instead of $25 to the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.
And possibly my son.