It was a challenge for Dr. Mark Dickson in Tillsonburg to come up with a new moustache design for this year’s Movember.
He knew last year’s Hulk Hogan handlebar would be hard to beat.
The solution took months to develop.
His daughter Josie, a Grade 1 student, says his moustache looks “a little weird” but it’s “sort of like Mario.”
“She was kind of confused but overall she likes it, she thinks it looks like Mario and we’re a household that likes Mario and grew up playing those games,” said Dickson.
His son Thomas, a JK student, wrote about the removal of his father’s beard – leaving a large moustache – and noted it in his school journal.
“This is a big thing for him,” Dickson smiled. “I had both kids with me when I shaved my beard off and you could see the hair flying everywhere. They thought that was hilarious.”
Now in his sixth year raising money for the Movember cause, Dickson said his goal this year is to raise $2,020.
“Just to remember this crazy year that we’ve had, and to hopefully end it on a positive note.”
As of Nov. 15, Dickson had raised $1,051.
“I wasn’t expecting it to be that high right now, just with COVID and other stuff going on. It’s kind of harder to ask people for donations. I think a lot of charities are struggling right now unfortunately.
“I am really thankful to have these amazing supporters. Over the past six years some of them have donated to me every year and it just seems we’re moving forward.”
Each year Movember (ca.movember.com) participants raise awareness and funds for men’s health, which includes prostate cancer research, testicular cancer research and mental health/suicide prevention.
“Since I started in 2015, the current total is at $10,988,” said Dickson, who traditionally starts his moustache after a clean shave in November. This year he got a head start.
“It was going to be kind of hard to compete with the Hulk Hogan that we did last year. So this year I ended up growing a beard for about three months starting around July, so that by the time November rolled around when I shaved the beard off, I had quite a long moustache.”
His wife Anna, who supports him in his Movember fundraising, purchased moustache wax so he could try out different shapes and designs.
“Everyone’s on board and we’re all having fun with it,” he said.
Based on feedback, some people are saying he looks like Snidely Whiplash, a villain from The Rocky and Bullwinkle Show; and race car driver Dale Earnhardt; or the Monopoly guy; and yes, Mario. Maybe throw in the Earps from the Tombstone movie for good measure.
“I’m thinking later this month, to conclude the campaign, I will do some kind of fun dress-up again. I’m keeping it secret for now… but there will be some fun photos by the end of the month.”
Dickson can be contacted through his Facebook page or email (firstname.lastname@example.org) to get the link to make a donation on the Movember website.
“People will also drop off donations at my office (264 Tillson Ave.).”
Last year the Dickson family completed 60-kilometre walking, part of the Movember campaign’s walk in memory of men who die by suicide every 60 seconds in the world.
“We’re trying to be active as a family so we’re getting out even with the cold nights. Our first night out, Nov. 1, I think that was when we had the big snowfall.”
As of Sunday, the family had completed 29 kilometres of walking.
In a COVID-19 pandemic year, wearing facemasks has become the norm, which means Dickson’s moustache is not getting the exposure it normally does.
“This year, it’s one of the best moustaches I’ve ever had but unfortunately not a lot of people see it because I have my mask on all the time. I do keep up to date photos of myself on my phone and I have pictures printed out in my office to show them.”