Eighteen male teachers and staff members at Timothy Edwards Middle School have found themselves in a month-long hairy situation.
But in an good way.
The hirsute 18 all grew mustaches for Movember - a charity event in which men don facial hair to raise awareness and funds for men’s health, most notably for prostate and testicular cancers.
At Timothy Edwards, the participants divided themselves into five teams with themes:
- Mr. Clean (custodians and maintenance - Chet Abel, Tom Rymarzick, Amondio Inacio, Wally Plourde, Sean McDermott);
- The Roosevelts (history department and assistant principal - Rob Murphy, Steve Potter, Vinny Federici);
- Team Einstein (math and science - Steve Arsten, Jim Guida, Stefan Klein, Ted Burhans);
- Team Mario (tech ed, gym and music - Jeff Goric, Brian Chandler, Tom Savage, Officer Caleb Lopez); and
- The Lone Grader (Nick Canova, a seventh-grade teacher who got into the competition late).
Fake mustaches have been on sale for $2 to students and staff who, during lunch periods, have their choice of jug designated to a competitor in which to place the money.
The competitor on each team with the least amount of money in his jug at the end of the week is eliminated. His money is then spread out among his remaining team members. The team with the most money at the end wins.
The friendly competition also has unveiled some interesting school dynamics. Team Mr. Clean, for example, is at a distinct disadvantage with a large segment of the school population, as team members don’t have as much interaction with students.
But they do have female cafeteria workers - whom they affectionately call “Super PACs” on their side. The Super PACs have been known to drop $20 bills in a member of Mr. Clean’s jug.
And while genetics may have conspired to keep some from growing full mustaches, at least one competitor - Goric - found a way around it by shaving a mustache into the back of his head.
“It’s been a lot of fun and the kids get a kick out of it,” Murphy said.
While that may be a laughing matter, the money raised by the event - some $2,500 so far, when including online efforts - is not.
To donate to Murphy’s Movember team, visit http://mobro.co/robertmurphy.