Welcome to November, when the afternoon shadows grow long, orange and red leaves turn to brown, and an unmistakable crispness enters the air. The weeks between Halloween and Thanksgiving are a time for me to catch my breath, especially after the busy October I just had that saw me traveling four out of five weekends. Whatever November means to you, the month has taken on another level of significance thanks to Movember.
Not sure what Movember is? During November, men around the world grow mustaches to raise awareness for men’s health, specifically testicular and prostate cancer.
I was familiar with Movember, but have had no interest in participating. I’m not much for facial hair, especially growing a mustache. So when I was invited by Ted of Traveling Ted and Karla of Traveller Soul to make my manly bucket list, I realized I could help raise awareness without the extra facial hair.
Man Made is supporting the Movember charity for the third year and is using Raymond Walsh from Man on the Lam to raise awareness. He will complete his own Manly Bucket List with Man Made during the month of November.
Here is my attempt to raise awareness to the charity with my own manly bucket list. Since a lot of my travels through the years have involved sports, I thought I’d do a sports manly bucket list.
Run a Marathon in a Unique Location
I officially hung up my spikes as a competitive runner a couple of years ago, but that hasn’t stopped me from running and biking from time to time. I’ve run a couple of half-marathons and a full marathon, but always in my home city of Memphis. I once harbored hopes of qualifying for Boston, but I just don’t feel like dedicating the time and energy to proper training to get a qualifying time. But that doesn’t mean I can’t enter another marathon, whether it’s one of the big boys like Chicago or New York, or somewhere really unique.
And it just so happens that a couple of days ago a friend floated the idea of the Mayor’s Midnight Sun Marathon in Anchorage, Alaska, in June. Traveling to Alaska is high on my to-do list. Why not visit while running 26.2 miles? I’m thinking about it.
Attend a Game in Every Major League Ballpark
This task will take a few years to accomplish. I only travel with sports in mind once or twice a year, and those trips aren’t always centered around Major League Baseball. I’ve been to games at 12 ballparks (15 if you include new and old ballparks of the same team: old and new Texas, old and new St. Louis and old and new Yankees Stadium). Most of my ballpark trips have come via trips with my friends, but there have been a couple my wife has been on. And having a 7-year-old son who is obsessed with sports, I think this task will get easier to accomplish in the coming years.
Baseball trips can be a lot of fun, especially when combining multiple ballparks in one trip. One memorable trip combined Cleveland and Pittsburgh, two cities I normally wouldn’t think to visit considering i live in Memphis and don’t have a lot of reason to visit either city. One trip in the very early planning stages is an extended weekend in the Philadelphia-Baltimore-D.C. corridor to watch the Phillies, Orioles and Nationals play in their respective home parks. That could be on the horizon in 2014.
Attend the World Cup
This one is harder than it seems on the surface. I like to travel, I love big sports events, so just book my tickets to Brazil for the 2014 World Cup. I’m also a practical traveler, and I know how every cost imaginable in the World Cup cities is sure to be elevated. I’m not sure if I want to experience the World Cup badly enough to deal with the higher lodging, restaurant and transportation costs, not to mention the crowds.
But as my soccer fandom continues to grow, I think experiencing the World Cup in person would be a great life experience. It wouldn’t matter what nation’s teams I would have the privilege to watch play. World football fans seem to be the most passionate, and I’d happily join in the fun cheering on a country I have no allegiance to.
Walk The Camino
I didn’t know much about walking The Camino de Santiago de Compostela, the pilgrimage across northern Spain to Santiago until I happened upon the Martin Sheen/Emilio Estevez movie “The Way” earlier this year. Since then, I’ve discovered several bloggers I follow who have walked The Way, including the very recent journey made by Kim of So Many Places.
I’d like to complete this journey. It’s not for religious reasons, an effort to discover myself or to just escape the stresses of society for a month. I think it would be fun. That’s it. As mentioned above, I’m a former competitive distance runner. The challenge of walking 500 miles intrigues me. If I had enough time I’d be interested in walking/running/cycling across a state or a region. The Camino seems so obvious to me in that the path is there and thousands take the journey every year. All I’d have to do is walk. It wouldn’t require the planning and logistics headaches that would come with running across Tennessee, for example.
I think I’d like to tackle this goal when my son is a bit older, maybe during one of his summer breaks as a high schooler. I just hope my old knees will be able to hold up for a month or more of walking by then.
Attend the Indianapolis 500
I’m not a racing fan by any means, but the history and pageantry surrounding the Indianapolis 500 intrigues me. I actually just this month attended my first major car race, the NASCAR Nationwide Series race in Fort Worth, Texas. The adrenaline rush of watching 30-plus cars whiz by at 180 mph was awesome.
I enjoy Indianapolis. There is so much to do, especially when traveling as a family. But I’d really like to attend a race at The Brickyard, the largest sporting facility in the world with more than 250,000 seats. It would be awesome to watch the drivers kiss the bricks, and the race champion celebrate with a bottle of milk.
How You Can Get Involved:
Calling All Bloggers!
Since the aim is raising awareness of Movember and men’s health issues, I know the power the blogging community has to do just that. I’m asking any blogger that is interested to get involved by doing the following:
- Choose five activities you’d like to do and create your own Manly Bucket List – they can be something you commit to do during Movember, or simply something you’d like to do before you kick the bucket. (Ladies, this is open to you too!)
- Nominate five bloggers to create their own Manly Bucket List.
- Include a link to Movember to encourage people to register or donate.
- Tweet and share your posts with the hashtags #Movember and #ManlyMoments
Here are the five bloggers I nominate to create their own Manly Bucket List:
Not a Blogger? Here’s something everyone can do:
- Read along as Raymond attempts to complete his Manly Bucket List at MadeMan.com/Movember
- Follow along on Facebook and Twitter with the hashtags #Movember and #ManlyMoments
- Go to Movember.com to find out more about men’s health issues, support a Mo Bro or Mo Sistah, or to register to become one yourself.
- Check out the schedule for the Made Man Movember Mo’asis Bus Tour and come on by if you are in the neighborhood for free shaves and tons of great activities.
- And, if you’ve got some spare cash lying around, DONATE!
In addition, every time you send a Tweet, a Vine, an Instagram, or post to Facebook with your own manly photo or text using the hashtag #ManlyMoments, the folks at Made Man will donate $1 to Movember.
You’ll also be entered into a drawing for a trip for two to Las Vegas to experience your very own Mancation that includes the Top Gun Experience from Sky Combat Ace.