After 22 months, it's finally time to let the hair go. And you decide what happens to this blank canvas. Comb-over? Samurai topknot? Krusty the Clown? Bad Hair for a Good Cause. You encourage me to do stupid things by donating money to humanitarian organizations. Let the voting begin . . .

Friday, April 28, 2006

The Final Tally (with Late Donations): $3,700

Some late donations came in, boosting the total even higher. The updated numbers are below. Once again, thanks to all who made one silly haircut into such a successful fundraiser for a multitude of worthwhile humanitarian charities.

Though The Hair Project is complete, there is still plenty more work left to do. Those of you who live in DC as well as other cities across the country will have the opportunity to make your voices heard this Sunday with the Rally to Stop Genocide. A list of speakers is here. Events in other cities can be found here.

It's important to show up in order to ensure that elected officials realize that there is a groundswell of support for intervention to stop this horrific genocide. The higher the turnout, the better chance there is for the international community to step up and meet its moral obligation. Once again, I'd like to remind you all of what former Senator Paul Simon (D-IL) had to say in retrospect with regards to the genocide in Rwanda: "If every member of the House and Senate had received 100 letters from people back home saying we have to do something about Rwanda, when the crisis was first developing, then I think the response would have been different."

Fortunately, some members of Congress do care. Now the key is getting them all to care and press for more international action. President Bush has now spoken strong words as well:
"The genocide in Sudan is unacceptable," Bush said. "There will be rallies across our country to send a message to the Sudanese government that the genocide must stop. ... I want the Sudanese government to understand the United States of America is serious about solving this problem."
Finally, one last thing. As some folks have asked about what actions can actually be taken by the international community, I direct you to Nicholas Kristof's column from last Tuesday, as well as two sites he mentions: savedarfur.org and genocideintervention.net. For those of you who lack access to TimesSelect, I've excepted some of the column below:

The first step to stop the killing is to dispatch a robust U.N. peacekeeping force of at least 20,000 well-equipped and mobile troops. But because of precisely the nationalistic sensitivities that Osama is trying to stir, it shouldn't have U.S. ground troops. Instead, it should be made up mostly of Turks, Jordanians, Bangladeshis, Pakistanis and other Muslims, and smaller numbers of European and Asian troops. The U.S. can supply airlifts, and NATO can provide a short-term bridging force if necessary.

Second, the U.S. and France should enforce a no-fly zone from the French air base in Abéché, Chad. American military planners say this is practicable, particularly if it simply involves destroying Sudanese aircraft on the ground after they have attacked civilians.

Granted, these approaches carry real risks. After we shoot up a Sudanese military plane, Sudan may orchestrate a "spontaneous" popular riot that will involve lynching a few U.S. aid workers — or journalists.

. . .

A no-fly zone and a U.N. force are among the ways we can apply pressure, but another essential element is public diplomacy. We should respond to Osama by shining a spotlight on the Muslim victims of Darfur (many Arabs have instinctively sided with Sudan's rulers and have no idea that nearly all of the victims of the genocide are Muslim).

The White House can invite survivors for a photo-op so they themselves can recount, in Arabic, how their children were beheaded and their mosques destroyed. We can release atrocity photos, like one I have from an African Union archive of the body of a 2-year-old boy whose face was beaten into mush. President Bush can make a major speech about Darfur, while sending Condi Rice and a planeload of television journalists to a refugee camp in Chad to meet orphans.

Madeleine Albright helped end the horrors of Sierra Leone simply by going there and being photographed with maimed children. Those searing photos put Sierra Leone on the global agenda, and policy makers hammered out solutions. Granted, it's the fault of the "CBS Evening News" that it gave Darfur's genocide only 2 minutes of coverage in all of last year (compared with the 36 minutes that it gave the Michael Jackson trial), but the administration can help when we in the media world drop the ball.

The U.S. could organize a summit meeting in Europe or the Arab world to call attention to Darfur, we could appoint a presidential envoy like Colin Powell, and we could make the issue much more prominent in our relations with countries like Egypt, Qatar, Jordan and China.


And here are our final numbers:

Total Donations: $3,700

The Beneficiaries
Doctors Without Borders: $2,724
Save Darfur.org: $225
Environmental Working Group: $200
Oxfam America: $196
Amnesty International: $100
CARE: $100
International Rescue Committee: $50
Humane Society (of the US): $25
Human Rights Watch: $20
UN World Food Programme: $10

And lastly, if you were wondering what happens once 22 months of hair growth is completely eliminated, here's one answer (and there are more pics of the hair-cutting process here):

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Photo Shoot

From this:




To this:



An extra special thanks to my two wonderful stylists, pictured below, the extraordinary Daniel Francis Poppy and Heather Ehlers.

Here's a quick version of the transformation:



A Math Error: $3,471 Raised!

Looks like my arithmetic skills failed me last night. As it turns out, a total of $3,471 was raised. I accidentally excluded mention of one beneficiary and I made an error tabulating the votes, as well, erroneously padding the Let It Grow option by 100 votes. My apologies for the errors.

Here is the final tally, with all numbers checked and double-checked.

Total Donations: $3,471

The Beneficiaries
Doctors Without Borders: $2,495
Save Darfur.org: $225
Environmental Working Group: $200
Oxfam America: $196
Amnesty International: $100
CARE: $100
International Rescue Committee: $50
Humane Society (of the US): $25
Human Rights Watch: $20
UN World Food Programme: $10


Krusty the Clown 1,121

Let It Grow for Another 22 Months (Write-In) 730
Comb-Over/Gallagher 494
Just Plain Bald (Write-In) 405
Friar Tuck (Write-In) 281
Samurai 260
Corn Rows (Write-In) 75
Best Ever (Write-In) 45
Vanilla Ice (Write-In) 30
Whatever the Girlfriend Wants (Write-In) 20
The Octopus (Write-In) 10

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Final Vote Count

Despite a last second surge by voters supporting the Let It Grow option, the final day's rally pushed Krusty the Clown to victory.

Check back tomorrow for pictures of the finished product.

Total Donations: $3,371


The Beneficiaries
Doctors Without Borders: $2,495
Save Darfur.org: $225
Environmental Working Group: $200
Oxfam America: $196
Amnesty International: $100
CARE: $100
International Rescue Committee: $50
Human Rights Watch: $20
UN World Food Programme: $10


Krusty the Clown 1121

Let It Grow for Another 22 Months (Write-In) 830
Comb-Over/Gallagher 494
Just Plain Bald (Write-In) 405
Friar Tuck (Write-In) 281
Samurai 260
Corn Rows (Write-In) 75
Best Ever (Write-In) 45
Vanilla Ice (Write-In) 30
Whatever the Girlfriend Wants (Write-In) 20
The Octopus (Write-In) 10

Your Final Vote Update Before The Cut

While a number of you have begged for me to extend the deadline, I'm going to stick firm with tonight's 8 pm EDT deadline. Though we've been getting a bit of press and tons of hits, I feel like it's best to stick with the original deadline and not change things up at the last second. So get those votes coming in the next two hours.

As promised, here is the latest tally.

For the final count, check back tomorrow morning around 11 am EDT. I'll post the final numbers then, as well as unveil the new hairdo with some pictures.


Total Donations: $3,046

The Beneficiaries
Doctors Without Borders: $2,295
Save Darfur.org: $200
Oxfam America: $196
Amnesty International: $100
CARE: $100
International Rescue Committee: $50
Human Rights Watch: $20
UN World Food Programme: $10


Krusty the Clown 1121
Comb-Over/Gallagher 494
Let It Grow for Another 22 Months (Write-In) 430
Just Plain Bald (Write-In) 405
Samurai 260
Friar Tuck (Write-In) 156
Corn Rows (Write-In) 75
Best Ever (Write-In) 45
Vanilla Ice (Write-In) 30
Whatever the Girlfriend Wants (Write-In) 20
The Octopus (Write-In) 10

4 Hours Left and More Than $2,400

Wow, this is insane. We're now getting press coverage in Kansas and from the DCist. Who would've thunk it? We've just passed the $2,400 make; perhaps a rich benfactor can get us to $5,000? Well, maybe not, but this has been far more successsful than I ever would've thought.

Per usual, here's a FAQ for the newcomers. Keep in mind that you can most certainly donate to some of the other worthwhile organizations that have received money since this project started, in addition to the three listed in the FAQ.

Also, while I have your attention, please note that Nicholas Kristof, the NY Times columnist, was just awared a Pulitzer Prize, specifically for his coverage of the genocide in Darfur. The Times has now opened up Kristof's Darfur archive to non-TimesSelect subscribers, so take a look. Kristof has probably done more, single-handedly, to get Americans to recognize the tragedy in Darfur than any world leader.

Also, the Times had an excellent editorial on the subject of Darfur last week. Read it here.

Now, on to the most recent tally; keep in mind that you have until 8 pm EDT tonight to vote . . .

Total Donations: $2,450

The Beneficiaries
Doctors Without Borders: $1,820
Oxfam America: $195
Save Darfur.org: $150
Amnesty International: $100
CARE: $100
International Rescue Committee: $50
Human Rights Watch: $20
UN World Food Programme: $10

The Current Vote Total

Krusty 895
Comb-Over 460
Just Plain Bald 405
Samurai 205
Let It Grow 200
Friar Tuck 155
Best Ever 45
Vanilla Ice 30
Corn Rows 25
Whatever the Girlfriend Wants 20
The Octopus 10

Monday, April 17, 2006

24 Hours

Actually, only 23 hours left.

The voting has taken another turn towards the Just Plain Bald. In what looks like a race that'll come down to the wire, JPB currently leads by just five votes. I've keep updating throughout the day Tuesday, with the last update before the final tally coming around 6 pm.

Oliver makes a desperate plea in the comments section to yesterday's update, kindly requesting that potential Just Plain Bald voters consider another option, given that next Sunday I'll be rockin' the Just Plain Bald look anyway. Take Oliver's words however you'd like; I'll, of course, do whatever the voters say.

We're now nearly at $1,300. The newest goal of $5,000 may have been a bit too ambitious, but I imagine that $2,000 is well within reach. And if any of you know of rich benefactors who support worthwhile humanitarian causes, by all means let them know and perhaps we can, in fact, reach $5,000.



Total Donations: $1,280

The Beneficiaries
Doctors Without Borders: $880
Save Darfur.org: $150
Oxfam America: $70
Amnesty International: $50
CARE: $50
International Rescue Committee: $50
Human Rights Watch: $20
UN World Food Programme: $10

The Current Vote Total
Just Plain Bald (Write-In): 345
Krusty the Clown: 340
Comb-Over/Gallagher: 200
Samurai Topknot: 160
Friar Tuck (Write-In): 85
Best Ever (Write-In): 45
Corn Rows (Write-In): 25
Vanilla Ice (Write-In): 25
Whatever the Girlfriend Wants (Write-In): 15
The Octopus: 10
Undecided Write-In: 10

Sunday, April 16, 2006

After a few more votes trickling in today, all of you have now donated in excess of $1,200. I'm quite impressed. Meanwhile, there are still a number of you who've promised to make donations to the various charities below and haven't yet, so I imagine the number should be going a fair amount higher.

The goal of $5,000 may be a bit higher than is reasonably possible, but I still think that we might be able to reach it — I guess it's up to all of you and whoever information about this site gets forwarded to.

48 hours left. (Your votes must be in to thehairproject@gmail.com, along with a confirmation receipt of your donation, by 8 pm on Tuesday, April 18. For more information, see here.)

Before we get to the most recent tabulation of where we are with donations and votes, one ;ast thing: a few of you have asked about how long I plan to keep the new hairstyle. As it stands right now, I'll be rocking whatever foolish hairstyle all of you vote for from Tuesday night until Saturday night. Depending on what wins, of course, the hairstyle may change over the course of the week. (This post explains the progression of two of the possible haircuts.)


Total Donations: $1,210

The Beneficiaries
Doctors Without Borders: $855
Save Darfur.org: $125
Amnesty International: $50
CARE: $50
International Rescue Committee: $50
Oxfam America: $50
Human Rights Watch: $20
UN World Food Programme: $10

The Current Vote Total
Krusty the Clown: 325
Just Plain Bald (Write-In): 320
Comb-Over/Gallagher: 190
Samurai Topknot: 160
Friar Tuck (Write-In): 85
Best Ever (Write-In): 45
Corn Rows (Write-In): 25
Vanilla Ice (Write-In): 25
Whatever the Girlfriend Wants (Write-In): 15
The Octopus: 10
Undecided Write-In: 10

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Three Days Left in the "cHAIRity" Project

Who would've ever thought that over just six days, people would be convinced to make more than $1,000 in donations to worthwhile charities in order to see me give myself a stupid haircut? The response has truly been overwhelming. Apparently the combination of doing good, while making me do something foolish, is just too hard to pass up for many of you folks out there. And I thank you for it.

(Once again, for the newcomers: here's a brief summary of the project. And here's the starting point; this is what happens when I let my hair grow for 22 straight months.)

While the original impetus was to use my first haircut in 22 months as a catalyst to raise money for organizations working to end the genocide in Darfur, we've now expanded the scope of the project a bit to encompass a number of other humanitarian aid organizations. (If there's an organization that you'd like to support that hasn't received a donation yet, feel free to donate and forward your receipt to thehairproject@gmail.com and vote for a hairstyle that way.)

A few new donations have come in today — one supporting a new organization, the United Nations World Food Programme. We've also received a new write-in vote. A second new write-in vote came in, as well, but it requires the use of too much product so it'll have to be changed.

Today's donations put the Just Plain Bald look back into first place. It looks like my friends may care a bit more for me to preserve some semblance of dignity and self-respect than I'm willing to preserve on my own.

The new write-in is for The Octopus, which would be a sort of reverse Friar Tuck, keeping a sort-of skullcap of short hair, with eight long "tentacles" reaching down from the circle of short hair on the top of my head.

With three days left, here's where we stand. A number of you have promised donations, yet haven't donated yet, so things may change quite a bit before all is said and done — but for the time being the Just Plain Bald leads.

Total Donations: $1,055

The Beneficiaries
Doctors Without Borders: $700
Save Darfur.org: $125
Amnesty International: $50
CARE: $50
International Rescue Committee: $50
Oxfam America: $50
Human Rights Watch: $20
UN World Food Programme: $10

The Current Vote Total
Just Plain Bald: 300
Krusty: 290
Comb-Over: 190
Friar Tuck (Write-In): 85
Samurai: 60
Best Ever (Write-In): 45
Corn Rows (Write-In): 25
Vanilla Ice (Write-In): 25
Whatever the Girlfriend Wants (Write-In): 15
The Octopus: 10
Undecided Write-In: 10

Friday, April 14, 2006

One-Fifth Of The Way There: The Donations Hit $1,000!

After $125 of new donations, we've now hit the $1,000 mark. That's one-fifth of the way towards the new goal. Thanks to all who've participated so far. This fundraiser has gone far better than I could've ever imagined.

What is all this, you ask? Check out this FAQ posting to learn more about why I'm cutting my hair and who the money is being raised for.

Now, on to the updated donations and vote totals. After once again being surpassed by voters for the Just Plain Bald Look, the Krusty the Clown cut has make another bold resurgence and is back in the lead. A new write-in vote has made an appearence, as well: the Vanilla Ice. Yes, that would be adopting the same haircut (and eyebrow cut?) as that great rapper, Mr. Ice. (Also, word on the street has it that a few voters are lurking in the shadows, planning to make large contributions near the end of this project on Tuesday night and poised to take charge of the voting totals single-handedly. So vote now to ensure that our lurking voters have to donate more to carry the day.)

Total Donations: $1,000

The Beneficiaries
Doctors Without Borders: $665
Save Darfur.org: $125
Amnesty International: $50
CARE: $50
International Rescue Committee: $50
Oxfam America: $50
Human Rights Watch: $10

The Current Vote Total
Krusty: 290
Just Plain Bald: 265
Comb-Over: 190
Friar Tuck (Write-In): 85
Samurai: 60
Best Ever (Write-In): 45
Corn Rows (Write-In): 25
Vanilla Ice (Write-In): 25
Whatever the Girlfriend Wants (Write-In): 15

(Lastly, I just wanted to mention that I'm in western New York for the weekend and away from high-speed internet access, so the updates will be sparse — daily, but probably not more frequent — until Monday night.)

New Visitors And A New Goal

The Hair Project is moving into the Big Leagues. I've just been informed by both Lewis and Leah D. that we just got our first bit of press coverage, courtesy of USA Today's blog, Pop Candy. Pop Candy is a blog dedicated to "unwrapping pop culture's hip and hidden treasures" — something I never imagined that I could possibly be a part of. See the entry, entitled "Something for cHAIRity." (As one who loves bad puns, I wish I'd come up with that one myself.)

The entry itself, albeit brief, is quite amusing. Pop Candy blogger Whitney Matheson writes: "Judging by the guy's current hairstyle, he can't do much worse!" My mother would most definitely agree. (Thanks for the coverage, Whitney. And now that you've given a shout-out to The Hair Project, would you like to donate to the cause and help out a much-deserving charity?)

Hopefully this additional attention can only mean one thing: more money raised for the cause. With all the attention and interest this project has generated, I see no reason why to keep the funraising target so low. If The Hair Project has made it into the Big Leagues, we might as well swing for the fences. So here's the big announcement:

Our new fundraising goal is $5,000.

I have no idea how realistic that is, but given that this has completely exceeded my wildest dreams so far, there's certainly no harm in aiming high. After all, the original goal of $200 was eclipsed in less than two hours after I sent out the original email hyping this site.

You have until 8 pm EDT on Tuesday to donate. The Just Plain Bald look is still in the lead, but much can change in in the next five days. Donors/Voters, it's all in your hands now. Your wish truly is my command.

***

Meanwhile, I'd like to direct all newcomers to a recent posting; most everything is answered in this FAQ posting from a few days back. If you have questions as to what the project is, who benefits, how to donate and vote, what possibly hairstyles you can vote for, etc., most of the answers are right there. Also, with all the posts on this page, you can simply keep scrolling and find out all the details that way, too.

And finally, just a reminder since the question has come up over email a couple more times today: to vote, you must first give money. Pledges are not enough; the donation acually has to be made to be eligible to vote.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Reading Materials and an Updated Donation/Vote Count

Along with Nicholas Kristof's NY Times columns, Smith College Professor Eric Reeves has been one of the more prolific authors of op-eds and other articles regarding the situation in Darfur. See his website for more. His current analysis of the situation on the ground as well as his archive of newspaper and magazine articles are particularly worth pointing out.

Also, new visitors to the site should first see this FAQ which explains this project in some detail.

Now, on to the current fundraising and voting numbers, where Just Plain Bald has made a strong resurgence and is back on top. I'm doing whatever the people who donate vote for me to do, so if you'd rather see me do something stupid and crazy, it's time for you to donate and vote.

Meanwhile, a number of new organizations have received donations, all humanitarian and human rights organizations which are working on global poverty, development, and social justice issues. Please welcome CARE, the International Rescue Committee and Oxfam America to the list of beneficiaries. Learn more about CARE and what they do here. Learn more about IFC here. And learn more about Oxfam America and what they do here.

And the numbers:

Total Donations: $875

The Beneficiaries
Doctors Without Borders: $565
Save Darfur.org: $125
CARE: $50
International Rescue Committee: $50
Oxfam America: $50
Amnesty International: $25
Human Rights Watch: $10

The Current Vote Total

Just Plain Bald: 265
Krusty: 240
Comb-Over: 190
Samurai: 60
Best Ever (Write-In): 45
Friar Tuck (Write-In): 35
Corn Rows (Write-In): 25
Whatever the Girlfriend Wants (Write-In): 15
Write-In Suggestions with No Votes: Rowhawk (combination of mohawk and cornrows, perhaps using wood glue) and 22 More Months of Growth (pretty self-explanatory name).

What 22 Months Sans Haircut Looks Like

Since the previous image was of poor quality, here are a few more pics to let you all become better acquainted with the canvas with which you're working:



Wednesday, April 12, 2006

More Donations and Votes

For simplicity's sake, I'll be linking to the FAQ at the top of each new post from now on. If you have any questions that remain unanswered, either drop me a line or make a post in the comments.

Now, on to the most recent vote totals:
Total Donations: $590
Doctors Without Borders $430
Amnesty International $25
Human Rights Watch $10
Save Darfur.org $125

Krusty: 220
Comb-Over: 140
Just Plain Bald (Write-In): 115
Samurai: 60
Corn Rows (Write-In): 25
The Best Choice (Write-In): 20
Friar Tuck (Write-In): 10

A few new write-in candidates have come in. Corn Rows are self-explanatory, but the "Best Choice" and "Friar Tuck" may not be.

Here's how the inventor of the Best Choice described his creation: "a rat tail 5 centimeters in diameter, 1/8" fade everywhere else, a 10 cm lightning bolt shaved in the 1/8" crop on each side, 'LOVE' shaved in the left half of [the] moustache, 'HATE' shaved in the right half of [the] mustache."

And the Friar Tuck is perhaps better seen than described:

The Hair Project: A Brief Summary for the Newcomers

First of all, welcome to anyone who's new to the site.

We're getting plenty of new visitors it seems and not everyone has had the time to go through all the posts and get every last details, so I'll try to summarize everything in this post.

What:
My first haircut in 22 months. I figured I'd do something stupid for a higher purpose. People donate money to a variety of worthy charities for the right to vote as to what my next hairstyle will be. A bad haircut for a good cause. (It's better than the current situation, I suppose — that of bad hair for no cause.)

Why:
Like I said, it's for a good cause. I'm letting folks vote of how I should cut my hair as an awareness-builder and fundraiser for organizations working to help the victims of and stop the genocide in Darfur, Sudan. Yes, perhaps you should be skeptical of the shameless self-promotional bent to all this, but ultimately it's self-promotion for a greater good. In the end, I'd like the focus to be on the issue of Darfur more so than the haircut. It's just that sometimes you need to approach a serious matter with a bit of humor. That, and the fact that I'm far too willing to give in to doing stupid things, particularly with respect to my hair. To learn more about the crisis in Sudan, try one of the links on the right-side of the screen.

Who (The Beneficiaries):
There are a few of them now. I started off with just one, Doctors Without Borders. I've added a few organizations since then. If you'd like, you can choose to make your donation to Human Rights Watch or Amnesty International, and Save Darfur, as well.
Also, once cut, the hair will be donated to Locks of Love, an organization that provides help (in the form of hairpieces) to underprivileged kids with long-term medical hair loss.
As it turns out, the original goal of raising $200 was apparently far too modest. I'm now shooting for raising $1,000.

How:
To vote, all you must do is donate to any of the charities listed and then email thehairproject@gmail.com with your donation receipt (as some who have already donated have learned, it sometimes takes up to a couple hours for a confirmation email to arrive), letting me know how you'd like to allocate your votes. You receive 1 vote per dollar donated and you can allocate your votes in any way you'd like; i.e., you can use your votes to vote for just one haircut or you can split them amongst the choices.
In short, to vote you must first make a donation; an email to me pledging a donation isn't enough. Once you've made your donation, then let me know and you'll be eligible to vote.

When:
You must email your receipt and votes by Tuesday, April 18, 2006 at 8 pm EDT. The haircut will take place then.

Donations and Votes: An Update

Here's where we stand right now. Looks like Mr. Leconte was taken up on his challenge and no longer does the write-in vote of Just Plain Bald hold the lead.

Total Donations: $435
Doctors Without Borders: $310
Save Darfur.org: $100
Amnesty International: $25

Vote Count

Comb-Over: 40
Samurai: 60
Just Plain Bald: 115
Krusty: 220

The Important Things

In case the idea of doing crazy things to my hair overshadows the greater purpose here, I just wanted to remind you all of the cause for which I'm trying to raise money.

400,000 are now dead in Darfur and there looks to be no end in sight to the violent attacks carried out by the Sudanese government-backed Janjaweed militias. With violence now spreading across the border into Chad, the threat of widespread regional instability has increased. And yet, the international community has not stepped up and taken the strong actions it must. Sadly, the minimal effort that the United States has put in to addressing the genocide is far more than what political leaders throughout the rest of the world have done.

Hopefully last week's actions in the House will begin to generate momentum here in the US to take a bigger role in ending this tragedy. Of course, politicians will do nothing if people don't speak up. And unfortunately, as the U.N. special adviser on prevention of genocide said last week in comments comparing this genocide to the one in Rwanda, there's still a great amount of apathy towards action in the international community: "My sense is there's the same kind of wariness," Mendez told a news conference Friday. 'Let somebody else do it' is still very much in place."

Save Darfur.org noted earlier this week that Senator Paul Simon commented, in retrospect, with regards to the genocide in Rwanda in 1994: "If every member of the House and Senate had received 100 letters from people back home saying we have to do something about Rwanda, when the crisis was first developing, then I think the response would have been different."

Now's the time we must all speak up. Spread the word, lobby your elected officials, participate in rallies — make the world be serious when it says "never again."

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

The Money and Votes Are Rolling In!

Looks like I was being a bit pessimistic thinking we could only raise $200. In less than 2 hours, we've already gotten to the original goal. Would it be unrealistic to make the goal $1,000? Hell, we have a full week to do it, so let's see what happens.

As for the Vote Tally, here's where we stand now:

Samurai Top-Knot: 60
Comb-Over/Gallagher: 20
Krusty: 20
Just Plain Bald: 100

What is "Just Plain Bald," you ask? Well, it was a write-in vote, courtesy of Mr. Aaron Leconte, B.A., who writes:

"As of this evening, I have donated $100 towards just plain bald. You may be asking, "Just plain bald, just plain bald?! That's so lame!" Indeed my friend(s), it IS lame, and so I hope someone or group of someones realizes that 22 months of growth cannot end in JPB, and thus give $101 to something else and defeat JPB, putting the collective donations over the $200 mark. But right now, JPB leads."

If you want to defeat Just Plain Bald, it's time to step up to the plate and make your donation to a worthy cause.

Making Donations

A question came up in the comments section as to how you should donate money. Rather than collecting the money myself, I'm asking that those who choose to participate donate money to the charity online. That is, just visit the websites of Doctors Without Borders, Human Rights Watch, or Amnesty International, and follow their instructions to donate online.

Then, once you receive an email confirmation of your donation, simply forward that information, along with your vote allocation to thehairproject@gmail.com.

This way, you can be certain your money has made it to the charity you choose and it's easier for me since I only have to tally votes and not worry about collecting any money.

Another Beneficiary

I forgot to mention this before, but I measured the length of my hair and it looks like it's long enough to be donated to Locks of Love.

The Canvas

For those of you who don't know, here's the canvas you'll be working with (my apologies for the horribly low-quality pic):


Now, let the voting begin. Remember, just send an email confirming your donation to thehairproject@gmail.com and how you'd like to distribute your vote(s) and I'll keep an updated tally of the votes on this blog.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Other Possible Beneficiaries

I don't want to completely restrict who I can raise money for, however, so here are some other organizations you can donate to for the privilege of of voting in The Hair Project:

Human Rights Watch


Amnesty International

And if there's another worthy organization you feel I should support, email thehairproject@gmail.com and it will be considered.

Also, for more information regarding the crisis in Sudan, check out the links on the right. If there are other links you feel I should add, just let me know.

The Beneficiary

While everyone knows that I'm willing to do stupid things — particularly to my hair, even if there's nothing at stake — this time things are a bit different. I figure that if I'm going to make a fool of myself, I might as well do it for a good cause. So the cause I've chose to support with The Hair Project is the Nobel Prize-winning NGO Doctors Without Borders. They've focused on the genocide in the Darfur region of the Sudan for quite some time now, drawing attention to an area that greatly needs support.

Remember, each vote "costs" a $1 donation to Doctors Without Borders.

Here's some more info on the organization, taken from their website:

Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is an international independent medical humanitarian organization that delivers emergency aid to people affected by armed conflict, epidemics, natural or man-made disasters, or exclusion from health care in more than 70 countries.

Each year, MSF doctors, nurses, logisticians, water-and-sanitation experts, administrators, and other medical and non-medical professionals depart on more than 3,800 field assignments. They work alongside more than 22,500 locally hired staff to provide medical care.

In emergencies and their aftermath, MSF provides health care, rehabilitates and runs hospitals and clinics, performs surgery, battles epidemics, carries out vaccination campaigns, operates feeding centers for malnourished children, and offers mental health care. When needed, MSF also constructs wells and dispenses clean drinking water, and provides shelter materials like blankets and plastic sheeting.

Through longer-term programs, MSF treats patients with infectious diseases such as tuberculosis, sleeping sickness, and HIV/AIDS, and provides medical and psychological care to marginalized groups such as street children.

MSF was founded in 1971 as a nongovernmental organization to both provide emergency medical assistance and bear witness publicly to the plight of the people it assists. A private nonprofit association, MSF is an international network with sections in 19 countries.

One Week!

A date has been chosen for the haircut: Tuesday, April 18. Which means y'all have just one week to vote. My hope is to raise $200. Let's see how close we can get.

What Will It Be?


The Options, Part II

In case people are unclear as to what each of the options is, here's a brief descriptions of what I was thinking for each:

  • Comb-Over/Gallagher — I'll begin by shaving out the middle portion of my head on top, leaving a few long stands that I can pull to cover the bald spot. After a day of the comb-over, I'll trim off the extra strands, just leaving long hair around the sides and back, a la Gallagher. And then I'll trim the long hair so I have a short rim of hair going around the sides and back, a la my father.
  • Krusty the Clown — Inspired, of course, by Krusty the Clown of The Simpsons. A shaved head, save for three tufts; two larger tufts behind each ear, and one smaller tuft on the top of the head. I'll start off with all three tufts, then progressively go tuft-less over the course of three days.
  • Samurai Top-Knot — A look often seen among samurais in feudal Japan, or so say the movies. Strangely, the look also pops up in Chinese kung-fu movies and the like. Anyway, for this one I'll shave the front half of my head, save for a bit on top, and then pull it all into a top-knot.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

The Options

For the ease of counting votes, I'm going to provide y'all with a limited number of options as to what happens to the hair.

You can vote on three options or provide your own write-in. (If you'd like the rest of the world to know of your write-in choice, please mention it in the comments section. Though do keep in mind that while I'll go for the hairstyle that more people vote for than any other, I might modify a write-in choice, if it's the ultimate winner, as I'm going for something simple and that requires little in the way of product, etc.)

So here are your options:

  1. The Comb-Over/Gallagher
  2. Krusty the Clown
  3. Samurai Top-Knot

To vote, you need to send a confirmation of your donation to thehairproject@gmail.com. You receive one vote per dollar you donate. Vote as many times as you'd like. I'll keep an updated tally as to the vote count here on this site.

The Announcement

It's been more than 22 months. Back on June 5, 2004, I cut my hair down to 1/8" in length. I was leaving the comfort of college and felt the need to look presentable and professional. Of course, soon after being hired I realized that I could both keep a job and keep the long hair. And so the hair-growing began.

But now it's finally time for it to go. There are too many hairs in the bathroom, living room, and every other crack and crevice in our home. Dan Poppy is not pleased.

And this is where all of you come in.

As we all know, I'm prone to doing stupid things with regards to my hair. And now it's time to do something stupid once more. I'm letting the people decide my next hairstyle.

Anyone can vote and you can vote as many times as you'd like. There's one catch: each vote must be off-set with a $1 contribution to a few of my favorite charities. While I'm focusing on raising funds to help stop the genocide in Darfur, I'm willing to consider contributions to other charities, as well.