You guys actually survived testicular cancer yourselves. Tell us about it and how you came to set up the Blue Ball Foundation.I was diagnosed with testicular cancer and had surgery in September 2011, having my left testicle removed. During my recovery, I did a standup comedy performance talking about my cancer scare. I met Mike on the night and we got talking about the symptoms etc. Mike had a horrible gut feeling he might have those same symptoms, so he got himself checked by his GP and was also diagnosed with testicular cancer.He went in for surgery and had his left testicle removed too. During recovery, we met up again, became mates, and decided we needed to set up a foundation in Australia – because there wasn’t one – to get the message out to Aussie men.
What’s the one message you want to get out to the Australian public?Aussie men can save their loved ones a lot of heartache, just by doing a simple self-check and/or getting regular health checkups at their GP. Testicular cancer has a very good survival record, but many young men are dying due to a lack of self-checks and a lack of knowledge of men’s health issues in general. We want to spread awareness, so that testicular cancer doesn’t spread through men.
Australian men are 21% more likely than the rest of the world to get testicular cancer. Why do you think that is?It’s probably due to the “tough guy” image that Australian males project, or are portrayed as having. Aussie men won’t even discuss normal health issues, let alone serious life-threatening issues – especially when it comes to topics like their penis, testicles and anus. They don’t want to talk about it, or have anyone having else take a look.
Tell us about some of the work the Blue Ball Foundation does.We’ve been strongly involved in awareness programs – including comedy nights, cricket and Aussie Rules footy matches, movie nights and a major Gala Event with comedians, musicians and special guest talkers on surviving testicular cancer.
How did you feel about the Play with Yourself idea when it was first presented to you?My first thought was wow, what a great opportunity to spread the word to a massive audience of Aussie men in the key 20-39 age bracket we target. We’ve been waiting for the right large-scale opportunity to present itself – and here it is. Play with Yourself will save many men from dying unnecessarily from this slow-growing cancer.
What excites you most about this project? (apart from the obvious!)The surprise factor. The last thing young men will be expecting to see while watch an adult movie is the star to “break the 3rd wall” and address the viewer with a message about testicular cancer. So we think the message will really break through. Also, our aim has always been to spread the message in a fun way, so as not to overwhelm blokes with fear. This project does exactly that.
How do you think the Play with Yourself idea will help your cause?It’s perfect for our 20-39 male target audience – many of whom watch adult movies online.
And even if only one guy, or their partner, does a self-exam after discovering the ‘Play with Yourself’ message, and one life is saved, then we’ve all done an amazing job…