A chance to make a change for Charity

28 05 2009

Dave Virden and SonSome of you may have seen the charity auction that got started on facebook, where I offered to cut my hair, with the bragging rights and the potentially physical rights to cut my hair going to the winner.  The idea was to donate the money raised from the auction to go directly to the Tri State Trek and the hair to go to “locks of love”, the charity that takes donated lengths of hair and makes wigs for people suffering from cancer, who lose their hair to chemo.Donate for Hope

I have sported long hair since my junior year in high school and many a ROTC officer, fellow fisherman, marital art instructor, buddy, and occasional parent, has bemoaned the various stages of length, cut, and reason.  My graduation as a long-hair definitely defined itself, when one long wheel watch, crossing the Gulf of Alaska, I finally figured how to braid it myself.  From that moment, I was able to control it and keep it out of the the way: it became easy maintenance.  But after many years its occurred to me that it is time for a change. 

So many of my friends have been so generous with their time and resources, offering their support and their actions, in my fight to end ALS.  With the current economy, many of these same people would have to dig deep in order to give anything and charities aren’t the first thing most people think about when they have a few extra dollars. 

This auction is an attempt to be playful and serious.  To invoke a spirit that sometimes the simplest acts of sacrifice and the longest held traditions can be changed to benefit others and to make a difference.  Sometimes coming up against the emotions that circle that change is the most difficult thing to do of it all. 

The people who go out to ride in the Tri State Trek embody that spirit.  Its not just the action of traveling a few miles, or remembering a loved one, or traveling in such amazing company under such an amazing banner.  Its the act of change, the willingness to alter the mind, body, and heart to be willing to bend to a charitable purpose, that is the most precious act.  The fact that we are also privileged and able to ride beside people like Darrell Goss and Dave Virden, ALS sufferers who point out that the most profound act is to live fully so others can live.  Every time the road is difficult, my energy flags, or I start to hurt, I am always brought to thoughts of my mother, of the acts of her life, particularly the amazing acts of her last months.  All I have to do is remind myself of all the families and all the people who are directly touched by this disease and what they wouldn’t give to have their loved one well, or what each person suffering from ALS wouldn’t give to have their lives back in their control.  From that thought, all the miles melt away. 

For them, I can go any distance. 

That’s one of the main reasons that I named my bike DEFIANCE.


So here it is….The outline of this silent Auction:  All person’s interested in supporting the cutting off of my ponytail for charity need to send a silent bid to  alswarrior@gmail.com

The winner will have either the rights to cut it off themselves, or will have the bragging rights to the act itself. 

There will be video shot of the event and it will be posted, so people who are bidding from long distance can still see it.

The cut ponytail will then be donated to “locks of Love” ( you can check this out at http://www.locksoflove.org/) in the winner’s name.

Chris Parkerson was kind enough to offer to match the winning bid with his donation to the Tri State Trek and is also willing to dress up in traditional Japanese martial garb and cut the ponytail off with a katana and post it on his wuweimonks@youtube.com

The winner will be announced on June 13th with details to follow.

Good luck! and Thanks!




One response

28 05 2009
Chris Parkerson

Hey Shawn,

I will dress up in traditional garb and hand the Katana to whomever is the highest bidder. Other than that, I am just a donator and observer.
So, Who is hungry to do some cutting?

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