Sunday, April 1, 2012

how moustaches took over my life.

I first saw one when I was in the Newberry bathroom.

Then there was another one in the library bathroom.

Then they were on sticks in jars.

Moustaches. They were everywhere.

I went back to the Newberry moustache on the mirror, and lucky for me, there was a nice set of directions to tell me what to do with this moustache. It told me to take a fun picture and put it on the Moustache Challenge Facebook page.

Hang on a second. Moustache Challenge? What kind of a challenge is that? What was this?

I am not the type of person to just sit around while my campus got covered in orange moustaches on sticks. I had to get to the bottom of this. So what was the first thing I did?

my social media-ized
'stache picture.
I swiped a moustache on a stick from Saga, took a picture with it, and put it on Facebook. I found the 'Stash Challenge page and put that picture up where everybody could see it. It then became my profile picture on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Tumblr, and my personal blog. Like Scotty, I'd gotten my 'stache on.

But I still didn't understand exactly what I was doing.

I flocked to the masses of Alma College like a private investigator with a notebook. I had three simple questions for the people that I accosted.

1. How much do you know about the Stash Challenge?
2. What do you think about it?
3. What do you like about it?

And if anybody really felt like talking to me, a crazed student trying to figure out why moustaches had taken over my life, I asked them if they had any general comments about the challenge.

The first person I hit up was Dr. Aspinall, English professor loved by all for his extensive Shakespeare knowledge and pink pants.

He informed me that the challenge was to encourage current students to give back earlier, instead of waiting fifty years and then deciding to donate to the college. It was about school spirit and advancing the college's direction.

After our interview, I checked the 'Stash Challenge Facebook page, and lo and behold, there was a picture of the beloved English professor, rockin' his own 'stache.

But I was not done ferretting. I still had to get to the bottom of this 'Stash Challenge. I took the campus by storm. Mostly at Saga.

My good friend and sorority sister Mal Montgomery ('14) was very vocal on the subject of the 'Stash Challenge during dinner.

"You hold up that cute little stache in the mirror or the cute litle stache on the stick. That should be a thing. 'Stache on a stick. If you post it to Facebook, we get money and instantly become the 20%. Then we get ten thousand bucks. I really like that, 'stache on a stick. And of course, they're moustaches. What's not to like?"

When I asked her if she had any comments, she said, "I just want more moustaches. I have like, fifty in my room. I wish I could grow one."

I cornered Tyler Buckingham ('14) at my library carrel. When I asked him for anything on the Challenge, he said, "No! I'm not prepared! I don't even know what it is!" When I told him this was going on my blog, he ran away.

When I accosted Carrie Frame ('13) in my poetry class, she shied away from being interviewed, but at last told me her thoughts on the challenge.

"Um... people take pictures that look like Scotty. I like it, I think it's funny. It's a fun way to get campus participation, and it's advertised really well. But I don't understand; is there a winner? Do they get anything?

Connor Welsh, '14, listened into the interview and had a few things to say about it himself.

"There are advertisements everywhere for it. As far as I know, you just take a picture, put it on Facebook, embarrass yourself, and get prizes. And it was nice to know that they just weren't in the boy's bathrooms. Girls can rock 'staches too.The whole thing is pretty hilarious."

In terms of prizes, shortly after I decided I was going to go out and figure out this whole moustache phenomenon, I got an email saying that I had won something for my moustache picture. I had won a button set, and could I please pick it up in the Hood Building?

I'd never been in the Hood Building. But I won some pretty cool buttons.

stache buttons!

The last person that I went to talk to was Bobby Kaczanowski ('13), an intern at PR, a fellow RA, and the proud owner of a 'Stash Challenge shirt. If anybody knew anything about the 'Stash Challenge, it was Bobby.

"It's a challenge that's put on by the Board of Trustees for students and recent alumni. It's called the 'Stash Challenge because it's kind of like 'stache' for moustache, but it's also applying to 'stash', like a stash of money. We're really just trying to get students and recent alumni to donate to the Alma Fund. I really like it. I think it's way more effective than traditional ploys to get money, and you don't have to donate lots. It's really fun! Get involved!"

Brian McCallister, '13, listened in on the interview and concurred: "I like it!"

On the Alma College 'Stash Challenge's page, this could be found in the information section to alert students who were putting their 'staches on social media:

Utilities, scholarships, opportunities... Did you know the ALMA Fund supports all of these things? You might think that change at the bottom of your desk drawer doesn't mean much. But it does!

The Alma College Stash Challenge has two goals: 20% participation from students and young alumni and 30% overall participation. If these goals are reached, the Board of Trustees will donate $10,000 to the ALMA Fund. So grab your stash of change, pay it forward by giving back, and get your 'stache on!

Well, I had certainly gotten my 'stache on by posting pictures to Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr. I was in a constant Twitter conversation with @almacollege, who told me that I should name my library carrel 'Stache Central.

But that's ridiculous. I'm just a blogger trying to get to the bottom of Moustache Mystery.

So now only a few questions remain, and it is my duty to ask you.

1. What do YOU think about the moustache challenge?
2. Will YOU get your 'stache on?
3. Wouldn't you like more scholarships and opportunities here at Alma College?

So now, I'm daring you to get your 'stache on if you haven't already. I certainly have.

(this was written originally for the student life office at my college. so that's why it's all capitalized and is asking you to get involved. but if you go to alma and you're reading this, GO GET YOUR 'STACHE ON!)

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