THE BLOG
08/27/2014 03:25 am ET | Updated Oct 26, 2014

The 1 Minute Blog. The Ice Bucket Challenge.

2014-08-27-splash.jpgI was excited to accept the Ice Bucket Challenge in spirit, but I wasn't eager to feel the rush of chilled water overhead.

That's when I had an epiphany. I'll prepare my ice bucket the night before. My sister laughed, but said that wouldn't do.

The Ice Bucket Challenge is part prank, part whimsy, and pure public relations genius. It's shining a light on ALS, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, best known as Lou Gehrig's disease. With this disease, the muscles become smaller and weaker, and gradually the body becomes paralyzed.

The goal of the challenge is to make ALS a household word. It has surpassed that. The challenge has virtually gone viral, with thousands taking a splash, from television host Conan O'Brien to Academy Award winner Matt Damon, and multitudes in-between, like my sisters and me.

I decided to take part because I know a man in my neighborhood who has ALS. He sits outside his house bundled up in a reclining wheelchair, bound in a mummy-like constraint.

When I recently talked with him, the 70-year-old said: "I'm entombed in this body, just waiting to die." But a smile crept up his face, and he said "I do all right because I have the RMA."

"RMA," I said. "What's that?"

"The right mental attitude," he said. "I don't feel sorry for myself and I take each day as it comes. I like to come outside for some air and see the trees and the mountain."

I smiled at him, wondering how many of us could keep the RMA with this man's heath challenge.

I'm glad people are learning about this disease, and the people suffering from it like my neighbor.

An ice bucket was never put to better use.

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