This will be the third straight year my cousin Louis and I have run the Cleveland Cupid’s Undie Run. What’s the point, you may be asking. The funds raised by the ridiculously generous participants go toward research for neurofibromatosis (NF) — a genetic disorder that causes a number of debilitating effects.
Each year, this run raises more and more. Last year, it raised $2.8 million for the Children’s Tumor Foundation and NF research.
As a working class man, my pockets usually are filled only with lint and loose notes to myself I forgot to remember to read. But runs like this one and the Akron-Canton Regional Food Bank Selfless Elf 5k help me help others.
Here’s the gist: on Valentine’s Day, my cousin will pick me up. I’ll hand him a sweet smoothie of my own making — a banana, some coconut and almond milk, a handful of blueberries, leaves of kale, and whatever the heck else I feel like throwing in there, providing a clean and tasty way to drink our preparation.
Once there, we’ll strip down to our underwear and step into the frigid lakefront air for a morning run.
So, is there anything attractive about this run for the participants besides all the bare bodies?
Of course we’re raising money for an urgent need, but we’re going to laugh at ourselves while doing it. I love that combination. Charity work doesn’t have to be straight and stuffy. In fact, from my perspective, it should be fun.
There’s something called “primary food.” It’s the essential human need for relationships. You have to love your home, work and play before you can enjoy and feel satiated from your breakfast, lunch and dinner.
We gain comfort and joy from our primary foods. Each person has his or her own recipe for it.
Some of us might be extroverts, so we need the primary food of raucous parties. Some of us are introverts, so we need the primary food of reading a book on the couch. Some of us love danger. Some of us are academics. Some of us are country, some city. Some Rock ‘n’ Roll, some Bach. Some of us like running, some walking.
Me? I need a silly party every once in a while to stay fresh and invigorated. The Undie Run fulfills that need.
And that’s why I love it.
Editor’s Note: Our own Working Class Vegan Man, Greg Milo, is still in need of donations to reach his goal for Cupid’s Undie Run! Visit his donation page to help Greg reach his goal and work to #endNF.