Wishing you a Happy Halloween
It should come as no surprise, Halloween is my favorite holiday of the year. It brings me fond memories of working on costumes with my mom and grandma, and the thrill of pretending to be something different while dashing through the night with friends. Now that I’m on the other side of the treat distribution, pumpkin carving is one of my favorite Halloween traditions, and this year, as in past years, I spent a ridiculous amount of time mulling over what to carve. I knew I wanted to do just one big pumpkin instead of several smaller ones, and I was sketching up a witch’s sabbat scene, but I just wasn’t feeling it. Then I heard the news that one of my favorite musicians, Michael Derks, has been diagnosed with a potentially fatal bone cancer, myelofibrosis. You may never have heard of him, but you’ve probably heard of the band he plays in: Gwar.
For the uninitiated, Gwar is a metal band of degenerate alien warriors, who put on spectacularly messy shows and regularly test the bounds of free speech and good taste. It’s a labor of love, and I admire the sheer amount of work they put into such glorious weirdness. They’re great musicians, and work hard to create their props, costumes, and mythologies. Derks has been a part of Gwar since 1988 and for most of that time has played guitar as the character Balsac, The Jaws of Death.
The man inside the alien is a good guy, and he’s continuing their current tour despite needing periodic transfusions. He’s going to need a bone marrow transplant if he’s going to beat myelofibrosis, so he’s set up a virtual donor drive to help get more potential donors registered. By registering you help create a larger pool of potential donors for EVERYONE who needs a bone marrow transplant. You can find out more here.