Saturday, January 17, 2009

Tap, Tap, Tap... Anybody Home?

The television ratings for the NFL conference championships are normally huge. It's winter. They stack the games up on a Sunday when people can entertain and relax and watch football and ads.

Tomorrow on prime time television, a team based near our nation's capital will be motivated by a former player with ALS. How often does ALS get that close to the eyes of millions of viewers?

An unscientific sampling this morning of the major ALS-focused not-for-profits' websites (which I'm sure get lots of visits) shows that none - not one - has any mention of O.J. Brigance or the Ravens on its home page. None. Nada. Zip.

Sleepy gets lots of emails from the same not-for-profits. So far nary a mention of a reason to pay attention to the Ravens tomorrow.

How hard would it be to salute a man with ALS who is an honorary co-captain and motivator for his team? How hard would it be to point out that this man has ALS, a disease that has hit millions of fine people just like O.J. Brigance? How hard is it to focus some attention to ALS on the big stage? How often do you get millions of eyes watching a pre-game coin toss featuring a man with the disease you're trying to bring out of the shadows and cure?

Anybody home?

You don't have to make a fundraising campaign out of it. You don't have to make a PSA to run at 2 a.m. You don't have to spend a cent to post a simple news item that PALS O.J. Brigance is motivating his Ravens and us all. It will be viewed. It will raise awareness. It's not that difficult.

Where else can you find millions of viewers who can learn something about ALS while stuffing themselves with nachos on a Sunday evening? Carpe diem. You snooze, people with ALS lose.

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