An Unexpected Journey

I am going to Miami for 8 months!

But wait, don’t wish me bon voyage just yet. See, I’m not actually going anywhere. That was just my cutesy way of raising awareness of breast cancer. Now any sane person should be asking themselves: What the Hell, Michegan, does a fictitious trip to Miami have to do with breast cancer awareness?

My answer is: I have no idea.

If you have a Y chromosome you probably didn’t get the following email:

Ok pretty ladies, it is that time of year again…support of breast cancer So we all remember last year’s game of writing your bra color as your status? Or the way we like to have our handbag handy? Last year, so many people took part that it made national news… and the constant updating of status reminded everyone why we’re doing this and helped raise awareness! Do NOT tell any males what the status means…keep them guessing!! And please copy and paste this in a message to all your female friends.The idea is to choose the month you were born and the day you were born. Pass this on to the GIRLS ONLY and let’s see how far it reaches around. The last one about the bra went around all over the world. YOUR STATUS SHOULD SAY: “I am going to Mexico for 21 months.” The month you were born is the Place you are going, and the day you were born should be how many months you are gone….
January – Mexico
February – London
March – Miami
April – Dominican Republic
May – Paris, France
June – Rome
July – Hawaii
August – California
September – New York
October – Puerto Rico
November – Las Vegas
December – Australia
Please do it, don’t be a spoil sport…show your awareness for Breast Cancer! Don’t forget to pass it on!

If you didn’t get the email, you had to go online to find out why all of your female friends were suddenly and inexplicably talking about traveling abroad for a year or two. So there it is: they’re raising breast cancer awareness. Aren’t you more aware now?

There’s nothing inherently wrong with breast cancer awareness. Women need to be aware that regular mammograms and clinical breast exams (CBEs) are critical for detecting potential tumors in their early stages. As with any type of cancer, early detection is important for a successful treatment.

I guess my problem is that this meme does absolutely nothing to raise awareness. In fact, the email specifically instructs women to obfuscate the purpose of the game for men, as if men don’t need to be aware of breast cancer. Men get breast cancer too, you know. Why shouldn’t men be made aware?

This type of tomfoolery is essentially harmless, but it’s also pointless. If you want to make a difference, stop the slacktivism and start writing checks. It’s okay to have an inside joke going, but don’t pretend you’re helping anybody.

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