Friday, August 22, 2014

What's Making Me Happy This Month - August

OK, I know a lot of people have had their fill of this. But what's been making me happy this month has been the Ice Bucket Challenge. Or, more specifically, the attention that Amyotrophic Lateral SclerosisALS /Lou Gehrig's Disease) has been receiving, of late.

Unless you've been living under a rock, or maybe just taking a well-deserved summer screen break, you can be forgiven for missing all the coverage that this viral fundraiser has been receiving. Everyone from Mark Zuckerberg to Shakira have accepted the challenge and filmed themselves being dunked with - wait for it - a bucket of ice water. For Canadians, the craze really took off when Sidney Crosby posted his challenge. From then on, it has been a daily deluge of online videos. The majority of the challenges have been casual, low-budget affairs; however, NHL player Paul Bissonnette's over-the-top production needs to be highlighted.

Aside from the fun factor of the stunt, I have a personal connection to ALS. You see, ALS stole the very first storyteller that I ever knew away from me. My grandfather was a born storyteller. On any visit, he would always ask if he had time for "one more story." In a cruel twist of fate, it was his voice that this terrible disease claimed from him first. Sure, we had the little white board and dry erase markers to communicate with, but his stories were in the oral tradition. He loved to tell a good tale and the silencing of his voice was one of the most heartbreaking things that I have witnessed.

Poppa knew his celebrities (he loved Shania and Vanna White), and his hockey players, and I know he would have had a chuckle watching all these ice bucket challenges.

#IceBucketChallenge - definitely what's making me happy this month.

For information, or to donate to ALS, go to 

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