On Nov. 1, men in Prince George, across Canada and around the world will stand together in staunch defiance against a killer that claims 4,000 Canadian lives each year.
Armed only with razors, electric shavers, scissors and trimmers, they will go forth to do battle. They will wipe clean the slates of their faces and then, with steely-eyed determination and stiff (and slightly razor-burnt) upper lips, they shall grow mustaches.
If you haven't heard of Movember yet, then welcome back to the world. How was life under your rock?
The Movember Brotherhood, more commonly know as Mo Bros, began in Melbourne, Australia in 2003. The original 30 Mo Bros grew mustaches through the month of November, laying the foundation of Movember as we know it today.
In 2004, 450 Australian Mo Bros - with the support of their loving Mo Sistas - raised $54,000 for the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia.
Last year, more than 854,000 Mo Bros in 14 countries, including Canada, raised the equivalent of $125.7 million for prostate cancer research and male health initiatives.
If the exponential growth continues this year - if more men heed the trumpet call of duty - perhaps a Mustachioed Million will carry the fight to cancer.
But the choice to join the cause is not an easy one. A man's facial hair is an integral part of his appearance and identity.
Is he a hearty outdoorsman, with a thick Bert Reynolds chevron; a no-nonsense man of the world with a Walter Cronkite painter's brush; a hip urbanite with a Robert Downey Jr. mustache and goatee/soul-patch combo; a hard-workin' country man with a Sam Elliot horseshoe; a distinguished gentleman with a Wilford Brimley walrus mustache; a suave sophisticate with a Clark Gable pencil mustache; a wacky, fun-loving jokester with a Sacha Baron Cohen handlebar; a tough, motorcycle-ridin' rock-and-roller with a Motorhead muttonchops-to-mustache mix; a strong, silent man of action with a trim Chuck Norris beard/goatee; a clean-living, clean-shaved man; or an artistic, gentle soul with a shaggy Daniel Day Lewis beard?
The decision to grow a mustache can not and should not be taken lightly.
To join the storied ranks of the Mo Bros a man must be prepared to sacrifice his sense of self, his dignity, his upper lip and possibly his sex life for the greater good. Not everyone has the follicular fortitude to answer the call.
But these Whiskered Warriors, these Sultans of 'Stache, these Handlebar Heroes have done more than just raise money for a good cause. Each mustachioed lip is a banner proclaiming the importance of regular prostate exams.
Movember has raised the profile of a disease once only spoken about in hushed tones behind the closed doors of doctors' offices.
One in seven Canadian men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in their lifetime - 26,500 men this year - according to the Canadian Cancer Society. Of those, one in four will die from the disease.
And yet men are notoriously bad at talking about health issues - especially ones as squeamish and uncomfortable as prostate cancer.
So, men, instead of having that awkward conversation about the ol' bend-over-and-cough, let your 'stache do the talking.
And ladies, to earn your place in the Honourable Movember Sisterhood, here are a few helpful hints: pointing and laughing, eye rolling, making faces, whining, complaining about being tickled by the 'stache, bedroom boycotts and general mockery are not helpful.
Your guy's regular, lovable face will return once his tour of duty ends on Dec. 1.
Until then accept that your man is on the front lines, leading the charge against prostate cancer - his mustache glinting in the sun like a cavalry sabre, poised to strike the death blow against a terrible enemy. Just hang on and enjoy the ride.
Fellows, if you are man enough, sign up now online at http://ca.movember.com.
And ask not what growing a mustache can do for you - ask what you can do by growing a mustache.
-- Associate news editor Arthur Williams