My daughter joined a team walking in this year’s Weekend to End Breast Cancer. I am proud of her and her team and of everyone who participates in any way.
Many of the walkers are those who are cancer survivors themselves. Others are friends and family — often, sadly, walking in memory of someone who has died. There must be some powerful emotions here, but on the surface everyone is upbeat. They are out there, doing something that is within their power. In financial terms, the walkers have raised a minimum of $2,000 each. As far as publicity goes, they are walking the streets of Vancouver wearing pink to raise awareness. Most are walking the full 60 kilometres over two days, camping overnight in between.
This year, the aims of the walk encompass all cancers that particularly affect women — ironically, those of the parts of the body involved in creating and nurturing life. But breast cancer is still the visible focus of the walk in most people’s minds.
There is a sea of pink on the streets and the outfits range from the practical to the outrageous. Many teams wear their own t-shirts with their team name on them. Some team slogans are dignified; others include slangy synonyms for breasts: boobs, ta tas, knockers, and more. Some are personalized, as in Brenda’s Boobies or Gloria’s Girls. My personal favourite t-shirt slogan: Saving Second Base.
They are still walking, but the end of the day is in sight. They will be out there again tomorrow.