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Quirky Facts about the Ice Bucket Challenge

Quirky Facts about the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge
I was recently nominated for the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge by fellow Texas writer, Brandy Herr, author of Haunted Granbury. The way the challenge goes, after being nominated you are supposed to either dump a bucket of ice over your head, then donate $10 to the ALS charity of your choice (I donated here) or decline the ice, and donate $100.

Although I was traveling and unable to respond right away, I chose the former. Even so, my ALS Ice Bucket Challenge was rather pitiful. (Scroll down for details and to see who I nominated!)

In the meantime, I’ve put together a blog post about quirky, offbeat, and overlooked facts about the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.

Here’s what I found:

Did you know that what we call ALS in the USA is known as MND in the UK? It’s true. ALS, which stands for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, is synonymous with what the Brits call Motor Neurone Disease, aka MND.

In the USA, ALS is also often referred to as Lou Gehrig’s disease, since the famous baseball player reportedly suffered from it, and was the first well-known person to be associated with the disease.

Lou Gehrig may *NOT* have had ALS
Some doctors suspect that Lou Gehrig may not have actually had ALS, but suffered instead from severe neurological damage brought on by being hit in the head so many times while playing baseball. We will never know, however, because Gehrig was cremated after his death.

Ice, Ice, Bucket, Too Cold?
Despite their chilly monikers, as of this writing I have not found any evidence that Ice T, Ice Cube, or Vanilla Ice have taken the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.

Rather odd, eh?

Some folks dump things over their head besides ice! (photo by Tui Snider)
Some folks dump things over their head besides ice! (photo by Tui Snider)

Quirky Ice Substitutes: Rice, Money, Bullets & Ganja
While many celebrities have accepted the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, not all of them stick to the script. Miley Cyrus poured uncooked rice on herself, Charlie Sheen dumped a pile of money on his noggin, and Orlando Jones gave a very moving speech after tipping a bucket of a bullets over his head.

Pot Bucket Raised my Awareness
Since the whole point of the Ice Bucket Challenge is to raise public awareness about ALS, I must admit that B-Real’s Pot Bucket Challenge raised my awareness because I did not know medical marijuana not only alleviates symptoms of ALS, but has been shown to substantially slow the progression of the disease. (Check out the link earlier in this paragraph for more info.)

By the way, if you don’t know who B-Real is, you may be familiar with the catchy song he performed with the band Cypress Hill called “Insane in the Brain.”

Ice Bucket by Proxy
To me, the most surprising ALS Ice Bucket Challenge so far was Stephen Hawking‘s, who was nominated by Neil deGrasse Tyson. Considering that Hawking has suffered from the ALS since 1963, I found his video quite inspiring.

Most Surreal Ice Bucket Response Goes to…
If you’re a fan of “Twin Peaks” (the cult TV show, not the breastaurant!) make sure to check out the most surreal ice bucket challenge I’ve seen so far, which was given by David Lynch. (For more about David Lynch check out this resource page on

Most Surprising Nomination Goes to…
I especially love who David Lynch nominated afterwards. Do you think Vladimir Putin will accept the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge? (And if he does, do you suppose he’ll be shirtless?)

My Bucket List for the ALS Challenge:
Since I met Brandy Herr through the Granbury Paranormal Expo (a lively Texas shindig that she hosts each year), I decided to stick with a paranormal theme for my ice bucket nominees:
1. Teal Gray Teal Gray is an intuitive, empath, tea-leaf, coffee ground and tarot reader with over 25 years of experience.

Not only does she host two paranormal-themed radio shows (Paramysteries with Teal and Teal Gray Worldwide Online Radio ), but she also writes an astrology column for the Dallas Entertainment Journal.

All that aside, Teal Gray is a fun and friendly gal who I met at the aforementioned Granbury Paranormal Expo. Since Teal reads tea leaves, perhaps she’ll dump a bucket of  iced tea on her head!

2. Dash Beardsley Dash Beardsley, Galveston’s premier paranormal expert, also known as “The Ghostman of Galveston” is the creator of The Ghost Tours of Galveston, which began in 1998 and has been rated the #1 Ghost Tour in America.

I have yet to meet Dash, but I will get the chance this coming weekend (September 6th) because I’m selling copies of my books at Dash Beardsley’s Wake the Dead Show, which Beardsley describes as, “Similar to comic con, this exciting affair provides a touch of paracon meets sci-fi, horror, and Hollywood mixed with a rock and roll and family fun!”

Sounds fun, eh? If you can make it Galveston for the Wake the Dead Show, swing by my vendor booth (I’m sharing one with Denton’s Ghost Lady, Shelly Tucker) and give us a howdy.

Ice Bucket Caveat
With such a big event around the corner, I don’t expect either Dash or Teal to be able to post their response within the usual 24-hour period.

But who really cares?

After all, the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge isn’t meant to promote punctuality, but to raise awareness and funds for ALS.

My Ice Bucket Debacle!
You may be wondering why there’s no video of me dumping ice on my head. Well, I wound up taking the challenge by myself ALONE in the backyard so that I could make the 24-hour deadline. I couldn’t figure out how to get video without getting my phone wet, though…

It was pitiful!

And, frankly, I felt silly out there dousing myself with water, because it felt really good! It was at least 100 degrees that day, and the only awareness raised was my awareness of what a fantastic idea swimming pools are, and how much I want one!

In my defense, I had flown in on the red eye that day from Seattle, so my 5:33 a.m. flight was really 3:33 to my body. I was pretty out of it!

What do you think? Should I have an Ice Bucket Redux?

So… if either Teal or Dash want to dump ice over my head this weekend when they take the challenge – I am up for that!

Have you taken the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge?
Have you taken the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge? What are you thoughts about this viral campaign? Has it raised your awareness, too?

Published inBlog on Writing & LifeMedia Kit

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