September is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month. I volunteer my efforts to support a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization called Kilted to Kick Cancer. All of September, an army of men wear kilts when practical to start the conversation, because people are naturally inquisitive about “what’s going on under there?”
This conversation starter opens the door for us to proselytize about male-specific cancers, including Testicular and Prostate Cancers. People openly talk about Breast Cancer, and you see pink ribbons and shirts all over. Rightfully so. 1 in 7 women will be diagnosed with Breast Cancer in their lifetime and 1 in 30 will die from it. The PR machine for raising awareness and funds is tremendous. A few women in my family have died of breast cancer, which can put my own daughter at risk.
As serious as those statistics are, we pay attention to them, but men don’t really talk enough about their own sex-specific risks. 1 in 7 men will be diagnosed with Prostate Cancer in their lifetime and 1 in 30 will die from it. You read that correctly. The statistics are the same as for Breast Cancer.
What can you do about it?
First, talk about it! Let’s make it as conversational as Breast Cancer! It is no less or more serious.
Second, get checked. The PSA blood test is far too unreliable, so you need to get the gloved finger treatment. Don’t like it? Suck it up! Women have mammograms done annually and they’re uncomfortable. Women also have pap smears annually. They endure. Man up and get in to your doctor annually and get it checked. If found early, it is very treatable.
Third, visit www.kiltedtokickcancer.org and make a tax-deductible donation for Prostate Cancer research. Click on the “Donate Now” button. You can make a one-time donation, and new this year, you can make a monthly donation. The donation billing form has a place to select a team at the top and I’d appreciate it if you select “Team Unwired Medic” so I can get some bragging rights with other fundraising teams. Thank you!
Fourth, make your own team! Get Kilted! Become a champion of this cause! Then go forth and spread the word and fund raise!
Do I have to be Scottish to wear a kilt? Not at all. In fact, utility style kilts, like the ones found at Alt.Kilt are getting to be quite fashionable and a regular sight! They’re extremely popular at fairs and events, like Burning Man. There are other, inexpensive ways to get kilts, but they are not made as durable as a traditional Scottish kilt. Economy kilts can be found at many places on the web, and they’re great for wearing for less formal occasions and for daily wear. I got my Leatherneck Tartan kilt as a package with sporran, sock flashes, kilt, and shirt at Sport Kilt. The royal blue utility kilt (seen in picture above) was a project my mother-in-law helped me make and we found patterns with a quick search on the web.
What’s the difference between a kilt and a skirt? A kilt has an apron in the front and is pleated all the way around. A sporran (the bag that sometimes has tassels on it) is commonly worn with a kilt, but not always. For the rest, I will have to leave that to your imagination. 😉
What do have going on under there? It’s a kilt, not a skirt! 😉 Also, see the previous question.
Do you play the bagpipes? Not yet. They’re a bit pricey, at least $1400 for a decent set and I have my eye on a custom Marine Corps edition for $5,800, but I’d be happy to learn if I could get my hands on one. Playing the bagpipes is not a prerequisite for wearing a kilt, and in fact, when playing the pipes, a different style kilt specifically for pipers is worn.
More articles to read about male-specific cancers:
Note: My blog links will include other links to kilt makers, D-I-Y kilts instructions, and much more…
“Man up, Marines!” http://unwiredmedic.com/2015/09/03/man-up-marines/
“Let’s Talk About Your Dangly Bits” http://unwiredmedic.com/2015/09/03/lets-talk-about-your-dangly-bits/
“Are You Kilted?” http://unwiredmedic.com/2014/09/18/are-you-kilted/
The Ambulance Driver (Kelly is a great sport about all this, even helping out the underdogs, like me): http://www.ambulancedriverfiles.com/kiltedtokickcancer/