Lupus ‘Spiel USA

TL;DR Version: I’m relentless at raising money. Please donate $10 to the Lupus Foundation of Minnesota on behalf of my team.

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As the weather transitions to summer, the trees green and thoughts of lawn care pop into my frontal lobe, one would assume that it would be time for me to lovingly pack my curling broom away in the basement for a few months.

One would be wrong.

Or as my teammate Clint explained, “Saturday is the Wisconsin fishing opener, but I don’t

They are still ice fishing in Wisconsin in May.

They are still ice fishing in Wisconsin in May.

fish. So curling it is.”

The weekend of May 1-3, I will be curling in the Lupus ‘Spiel USA at the Four Seasons Curling Club (you know, the one from Curling Night in America) with two friends and one, not yet determined, really, really, really good curler.  And we need your help, specifically a small amount of your money, but more on that later.

So you might already be asking yourself, what in the world does curling have to do with Lupus?  Well one is a quirky sport that most people don’t understand while Lupus is a disease that most people don’t understand.  I fall into the latter category myself.  When I decided to sign a team up for this bonspiel, I didn’t know much more about Lupus than it was some running gag on House.

Here are some facts about Lupus from the Lupus Foundation of Minnesota:

•         Lupus is a chronic, complex and prevalent autoimmune disease that affects more than 1.5 million Americans.
•         Lupus is difficult to diagnose because its symptoms come and go, mimic those of other diseases, and there is no single laboratory test that can definitively identify the illness.
•         More than 90% of lupus sufferers are women, mostly young women between the ages of 15 to 44.
•         Women of color are two to three times more at risk for Lupus than Caucasians

The symptoms of Lupus are horrible and debilitating.  Lupus can attack nearly every different system of the body.  If working an office job for 45 years were a disease, it would be Lupus.

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If you aren’t from Cleveland, this never gets old.

So you might be thinking, “Joel, if Lupus is hard to detect and the symptoms are even harder to treat, is there really anything that can be done about it?”  I would propose that you already know that I’m Cleveland sports fan, which means I’m always steadfast in my hope against incalculable odds.

A number of Olympic and National Champion curlers are donating their time and money to participate in the Lupus ‘Spiel USA and one will be assigned to skip each team.  It’s just another way the spirit of curling drives people to do better and be better competitors and community members.  In other words, instead of me yelling at my teammates for an entire weekend, someone else gets to yell at me.  And since yelling is my favorite part of curling, we’re all making sacrifices for a good cause.  Think of it as shelling out a few bucks to have me yelled at, because you’ve all wanted to yell at me at some point in your life.

So I need your help.

The Lupus ‘Spiel USA is planning on raising $25,000 for the Lupus Foundation of Minnesota.  I’d like to be responsible for $2000 of that total.  Which means, I need 200 of you to donate $10. Or 100 of you to donate $20. Or any mathematical permutation in-between that I could figure out on my graphing calculator if I only knew how to use it.

To donate, please visit my team page.

For more information on Lupus, please check out the Lupus Foundation of Minnesota.

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