Cheerleading November 2013: Brent Hayes

Brent Hayes, Cancer Fighter (Movember)Brent Hayes may look like just some ordinary guy from the heartland, but make no mistake: Brent is a living, breathing destroyer of cancer. I don’t think of him as a mere “cancer survivor” – I think of him as a “cancer fighter” because not only did he fight and win, he continues to fight every year by growing a mustache and collecting money for the Movember organization.

Brent Hayes’ Mo Space:

Not only does he fight cancer, Brent is also an air traffic controller, which means in addition to being impossibly physically tough, he must by default be extraordinarily mentally tough as well. He’s a little bit like Chuck Norris. Brent is NOT a person to be trifled with. Go ahead, I dare you. Trifle. You’ll lose.

Despite his questionable taste in football teams, Brent is a stand-up American with more grit and more guts than you and me put together, so I’m asking you now: visit his Mo Space, gaze upon his glorious mustache, and chip in whatever you can to fight cancer. IT’S THE LEAST YOU CAN DO.

Brent Hayes’ Mo Space:

Cheerleading November 2013: James Gunn

James Gunn: SEO Pro, Mo BroMy digital marketing colleague James Gunn is a father, a fisherman, a gardener, a small business owner, and now a Movember soldier of fortune. I’m here to raise awareness of James Gunn so he can raise funds and awareness for prostate cancer research.

James Gunn likes plenty of the same things I like: fishing, craft beer, fresh vegetables and integrated SEO, to name a few. He apparently dislikes prostate cancer, which also happens to be one of the things I dislike. So he’s growing a mustache and he could use our support.

James Gunn’s Mo Space:

On a personal note: James is seriously an impressive individual. When I say he’s a gardener, it’s an understatement – he’s more like a farmer. He grows massive vegetables at his place. He also launched his own digital marketing business earlier this year, which is handy for small businesses, beacause he’s very good at what he does, has well over a decade of experience, and he provides services to other small businesses that previously couldn’t get help from someone as talented as him because all that talent tends to work at agencies that only service large businesses. James Gunn is GOOD FOR AMERICA.

James and I have spoken frequently, emailed often, collaborated on numerous SEO campaigns, and still we’ve never met in person. But I’m not letting that stop me from sending money to his Movember campaign, and I suggest you do the same:

James Gunn’s Mo Space:

Every little bit helps, you guys. Please donate. If you don’t donate to James’ campaign, donate to someone else’s campaign. Movember is an awesome movement.

Also: are you a small business owner in need of better search marketing services? Click here: James Gunn Marketing.

Cheerleading November 2012: Eagle Sharks

Silverfish Longboarding Eagle SharksHow kick-ass is this? By accident I came across a Movember team called the Silverfish Longboarding Eagle Sharks. Evidently, there is a company that makes sweet-looking long skateboards and the company has a Movember team. And their mascot is an eagle shark. Longboards plus shark-eagle hybrids plus Movember is like a trifecta of awesomeness that appeals specifically to me, and I don’t know how to cope with it. It’s a perfect storm.

Obviously, I prefer the one-word spelling of “eagleshark,” but that’s okay, these guys are still rad.

Donate to Movember for this team if you think eagle-winged, mustachioed sharks RULE!

Cheerleading November 2012: Caleb Dann

Caleb Dann's Movember Mutton Chops
For the ladies: shirtless & mutton choppy!

The art and science of facial hair as demonstrated by Movember rock star Caleb Dann brings balance and joy to a troubled world.

As a Tour de Cure cyclist, Caleb knows a thing or two about health for charity and charity for health. He also knows a thing or two about handlebars, so Movember, it seems, couldn’t be a better fit for one single person. I don’t know too much about physiology, but I’m pretty sure his active lifestyle has contributed no small amount to the strength and glory of his too-enviable ‘stache.

If all this wasn’t enough to make the twee fans swoon, Caleb is also a home brewer, meaning he WEILDS CONTROL OVER EARTHLY CHEMICALS. This is especially impressive to me, a guy who got absolutely terrible grades in chemistry, despite good grades in math and other sciences. Chemistry is the one that eluded me, and having worked at a brewpub, I know just how complicated and delicate the chemical process of crafting beer is. I’ve got mad respect for people who not only know how to do this, but can actually do it in their own home.

Clearly, Caleb is a gent bent on world-improvement. But he needs your help and your money to do so – won’t you donate some funds to his MoSpace?

Cheerleading November 2012: Matthew Jackson

Matt Jackson, Movember Man
Is that a dog on his face, or is it the world’s burliest mustache?
Movember champ Matthew Jackson deserves your donations because he’s JUST SO CUTE.

I know Matt from our time at UC Riverside. We both majored in theatre, and we also had at least one Spanish class together. As an actor, Matt Jackson is the perfect ingénue. Matt has since gone on to grad school at UC Irvine for stage management, and I can only assume that as a stage manager, Matt Jackson is – again – the perfect ingénue.

Seriously, he’s one of the top ten nicest guys I’ve ever known. The fact that he’s raising money via Movember to give to cancer charity is just one more feather in a cap full of feathers.

You wouldn’t know it from recent photos, but Matt’s ‘fro is a ‘fro to be feared and admired. His hair, like his heart, is very strong and very curly. What kind of mustache can a head like this grow? I’ll tell you: the kind that fights cancer, that’s what.

Give money to cancer and show your love for Matt’s mustache here:

Movember: Conclusions

Priority number one: solve problems at work and don’t get fired.

Priority number two, I decided earlier today, is to create a list of things I learned from my month of cultivating a handsome mustache and trying to get money for it.

Priority number three is to defend “Star Wars” against “Star Trek” fans in a public Facebook debate. Guess which one has preoccupied me the most.

I had to cut things short on the Facebook debate, much to my chagrin, but I must properly conclude Movember so I can move on with my life.

Also, fires are still raging at work. Data feeds are dangling in the wind. Dealerships are raising the drawbridge. Gorillas are dancing with sloths. Trust me, all of these metaphors work. So first, that…

Okay, work is done for the day. The work that pays me, I mean. The work of explaining the dramatic depth and epic scope of the “Star Wars” universe will probably never end.

Here is what happened with Movember. I spent all month growing a mustache. I had hoped I’d be more involved with the charity organization part of it, but with a death in the family and the craziness of the holidays, plus the ongoing task of building some structure in the life of a five-month old girl, this month really got away from me. I couldn’t find the time or mental energy to read up on LiveSTRONG or the Prostate Cancer Foundation. At some point during the third week, I just decided to accept that all the money I raised was going to good use and left it at that.

I also raised less money than I thought I would raise at the beginning of the month, but much more money than I thought I would end up with when the month end approached. I initially thought I could reach $500. But the fund raising efforts ceased entirely for a short time and never really got back on track, so I adjusted my forecast by the 20th of November to a mere $100. I ended up with $145 at the end of the last day, and that was quite a pleasant surprise. Half of it all came on the last day. Lesson for future marketing career: always send out that one last email blast.

And the mustache part of it. That is where most of the unintended learning happened. This is what I take away from a month of growing a mustache:

  • I, Bil Gaines, can not grow a super-stud handlebar mustache in just one month’s time. I barely cleared the “respectable businessman” line in 30 days.
  • Shaving every single day does not, in fact, suck monkey balls.  It takes less effort than I would have guessed, and frankly, it makes me feel more professional.  And that feels good.
  • Drinking more coffee does not make facial hair grow any faster.
  • I still have zero white hairs on my upper lip.  Bonus.
  • A mustache is not, in fact, a sufficient filter for soup or other liquids.
  • My daughter doesn’t give a crap what I look like, she loves me no matter what.  However, I suspect my wife loves me less with a mustache.
  • A mustache doesn’t blossom overnight; a mustache creeps up on you like a bastard.  Any comedic effect I can wring from a mustache on my face wears off well before there is even any decent growth.
  • Some people take me more seriously with a mustache, some people take me less seriously.  One thing is for sure: more people take me in some way.

Now that Movember is over, I have shaved that fucker right off my face.  I used to think that without facial hair, my face was far too plain and my chin was too insignificant to go out in public.  But after trying to maintain dignity in a month of growing a mustache for charity, now I think my clean-shaven face ain’t so bad.

Sharkblog: A Missing Piece

Sharkstache or MustasharkMovember has been a strange experience; I’m not learning as much as I would have liked about men’s health issues, but I am learning a few disturbing things about myself.  More on that later.  What’s on my mind right now is a gaping hole in all our lives, and it affects both men and women.

Mustachioed sharks, it occurs to me, are sorely lacking in our culture’s literary & cinematic cannon.

In previous posts I have described my intention to write a series of screenplays involving a monster that’s part shark, part octopus, and part Orson Welles.  If we go with the Orson Welles from “The Stranger” we get the mustache.  This solves the problem of having NO mustachioed sharks, but it doesn’t make mustachioed sharks a widely-accepted and normal phenomenon.  We must go further.

Therefore, in light of this gaping inadequacy, I hereby declare on behalf of all Americans a desire — nay, a need — for a remake of the classic movie “Jaws” but with a mustache on the shark this time around.

The ball’s in your court, Stephen Spielberg.


Onto the next great challenge: Movember.  Per the rules, for the entire month of November, I’ll be growing a mustache.  I will leverage my mustache to ask for donations for (per the website):

…programs supporting prostate cancer and other male cancer initiatives run by Movember and through our men’s health partners the Prostate Cancer Foundation and LIVESTRONG.

Personally, I don’t know any prostate cancer survivors.  I’m not doing this for any one particular individual.  Furthermore, I have to disclose that I’ve never been particularly passionate about, or even interested in, men’s health issues.

But that’s just it.  As I get older, I become more and more aware that I’m not invincible, and my personal health is slowly building itself a presence in the back of my mind.  So here comes Movember, declaring that men’s health matters, and this strikes a chord in me.  But I don’t know very much about anything related, so I’m a little in the dark.

…Which is exactly why I’m taking this on: to raise awareness, mainly for myself, but also for anyone else that I can bring some information to.  Because awareness is the first step.  And awaring is caring.

Bil Gaines, with a mustache, circa April 2011.
Mustache. Glory.

Also, I can’t resist a mustache challenge.  So there’s that.

Interested?  Talk to me.  Comment on this page or message me via one of many social media outlets.

Care to donate to the cause, but don’t care to talk to me?  Click here.