Menstuff® has compiled information and books
on the issue of the Prostate. This section is an
archive of Kim Garretson's monthly poster featured
daily on our homepage. His book, Niches of
Clarity at Gunflint, is a sardonic view of the
infuriatingly awful healthcare practices and lazy
cavalier behavior by men that together give us
today's prostate cancer epidemic.
"Instead of adding to the Web's voluminous text
resources, I chose to modernize pulp fiction
magazine covers from the 30's to the 60's. (See
Why? Because I believe smiling at the absurdity of
the disease is one of many coping and healing paths
to follow," she says.
"My Requests: Women viewers: Please lead healthy
men by the ear to this page and make them look.
Healthy Men: Glance, grimace, get a PSA. Men with
Prostate Cancer: Hey, try laughing in the face of
dread. It helps." Kim can be reached at E-Mail.
The Crisis in Men's Health and Men's Health
Communications: An Apathetic Media Audience Caring
& Doing Too Little For Its Own Health.
There is a crisis in men's health. Too many men are
uninterested in reading about, talking about or
listening to advice about their health. With
prostate health, many men under 50 do not even know
the basic function of the prostate. How can we
alert them to its importance for a healthy body and
mind, and get them ready to manage their prostate
health according to American Urological Association
guidelines? After all, prostate cancer needlessly
kills more than 30,000 American men a year.
Perhaps humor is one idea? Maybe men will glance
at pictures that elicit a grin, and leave a message
that sticks? Will they call our 1-800-PSA-TEST
phone line and listen to our funny one-minute
Is an attempt to make the prostate funny an
effective tactic? Our experiment is beginning to
discover the answer to this question. And, with a
national ad agency and university health research
group taking on our campaign, we should have better
data about our tactics in 2005. We'd also like to
invite you to consider our efforts and perhaps use
our material as the starting point for conversation
with other men. Men's health groups countrywide now
are using our posters for this purpose.
If you have a phone handy, please dial
1-800-PSA-Test and listen to the first of a series
of messages from well-known humorists and comics
about prostate health. Gregg Stebben, a renowned
men's health author and commentator, worked with
humorist Tim Nyberg, one of Workman Publishing's
Duct Tape Guys, to launch the service. The goal
with this service: To get listeners to tell their
buddies to call the number.
Imagine the day when they invent an
artificial prostate. Guys'll be glad and
so will the women.
I was 51 years old and complained to my
doctor for years about prostate symptoms.
Stupid me for not insisting on the PSA
Let's face it. The prostate wasn't
designed for the dietary and psychological
abuse it must suffer today.
I call the biopsy device the
Derriere Derringer and it does its nasty
work up Booty Boulevard.
This image is from 1950's men's
'sleaze' magazines. Back then, attacking
our manhood were mean women and
Saddam-like chaps. I guess things don't
change much over the decades.
The Hindu theory of the body's Chakras
says that psychological abuse of men by
women can result in disease of the sex
organs. I had a hospital roommate, a
dentist whose wife verbally abused him
right after surgery. I hope some day he
puts her in his dentist's chair and
performs some Chakra therapy on her.
Why does this site have so many gags
about guys always running to the bathroom?
Because that's a key signal for a friend,
wife or girlfriend to pick up and make
certain this chap gets a DRE and PSA test.
Names of the cleaning crew on the left of
this comic poster are: Slow Mop Sue, Sam
Scrub-A-Dub, and TP Refilling Freak.
Again, we've been shocked to meet men
who take pride in supposedly tricking
their wives so they don't have to keep
doctors' appointments. The excuse is
usually that something came up at the last
moment. We can't even comment on the
cowardice and idiocy in this behavior.
A common therapy for the prostate are
Lupron shots to shut down testosterone,
the 'kerosene' that fuels the fire of a
prostate condition. You may have heard
about the side effect of hot flashes or
the practice of 'watchful waiting', or
hoping the PSA doesn't spike despite the
Lupron shots. Terrified by both prospects?
Believe us, Lupron is a wonder drug.
When you have a radical prostatectomy, they open
you from the top when the prostate is way down at
the bottom. Imagine the tango with the organs
necessary to delve in those depths.
I still flinch thinking about the
cystoscopy exam inside my bladder. The
nurse said they used to use a rigid
stainless tube instead of the flexible
'snake' and men really didn't like that
This original old magazine cover had
the woman shooting the fellow with a gun.
We put new devices in her hand and the
other fellow's. Why? Our research found
that men squirm at the thought of modern
medicine's devices probing them for clues
to prostate health. With our technique of
overblowing reality, our message is that
there is little discomfort in these
A general practictioner in a large
corporate medical practice is the last
person you want using his wooden puppet
fingers for digital exams only (and not
ordering the PSA blood test) to determine
your prostate health.
Since testosterone is the enemy of the
prostate, watch for our full site launch
and the fun we'll be having with our Gland
Man character and his battles against the
evil RONE and the equally nasty
ANT who spreads the prostate specific
If you know men who feel trapped by
trying to maintain a facade of their
invincibility but don't do the right
things for their health, we say: "We could
give a Rat's Ass. Get smart." The Men's
Health Network says "There is an ongoing,
increasing and predominantly silent crisis
in the health and well-being of men. Due
to a lack of awareness, poor health
education, and culturally induced behavior
patterns in their work and personal lives,
men's health and well-being are
A short break from our funny picture
experiments: HealthDay, the health news
syndication service, and the Chicago
Tribune News Syndicate gave our campaing
worldwide attention in 2003. Here is one
of the articles:"Prostate Awareness Can Be
a Laughing Matter".
To begin our beta sampling of humor art
techniques and messages, we use an old
men's pulp fiction magazine cover for a
message to all women viewers of this site:
With the possible benefits to prostate
health in soy foods, please help increase
your man's consumption of soy. How about
vanilla soymilk on cereal? Or, check out
some recipes at this site: Soymilk
and Tofu Recipes
If your sleep is interrupted by
trips to the bathroom or you run to the
john more often than other guys your age,
you could have Benign Prostate Hyperplasia
or BHP. Check out the oddly named, but
really nifty, TUNA Therapy by clicking
In doing research for our campaign,
we've been shocked to learn that many men
do not know the prostate's function.
Richard Saul Wurman's epochal book
Information Anxiety says that if someone
does not understand the basics of a topic,
he can't learn anything new about it. So
that's why we're not about cancer. We're
about the prostate. Look for more retro
magazine and movie posters about positive
prostate-health steps to take coming soon.
If you have prostate cancer, our goal is
make you grin with reminders about healthy
attitudes and actions to help fight the
Can the high-fat Atkins diet
pummel your prosate?
In doing research for our
campaign, we've been shocked to learn that
many men do not know the prostate's
function. Richard Saul Wurman's epochal
book Information Anxiety says that
if someone does not understand the basics
of a topic, he can't learn anything new
about it. So that's why we're not about
cancer. We're about the prostate. If you
have prostate cancer, our goal is make you
grin with reminders about healthy
attitudes and actions to help fight the
Ladies, if your husband has on
blinders about getting or bonding with a
dog, take matters into your own
Coming Soon: The Amazing 50 Year
Story of Dogs' Sacrifices for Prostate
Cancer Research. Like us, we think you
will be amazed -- and a bit saddened -- by
what dogs have meant for prostate cancer
Encouraging news this week: Dogs
being trained to detect prostate and
bladder cancer by sniffing urine.
Men's health book author Gregg
Stebben, who has interviewed most of the
famous men with prostate cancer, including
Millken, Guliani and Swartzkopf, hosts the
first of these one-minute funny bits.
Gregg said that in most interviews these
worldly-wise men admitted that they never
read or thought about prostate health, and
that their wives were responsible for
getting them to get the PSA-Test. Our goal
is reach women who can at least get their
husbands and fathers to call this number.
Again, with the PSA test under some
scrutiny, if you know men who are
bypassing it, we have four words: GET
TESTED. KNOW SOMETHING..
© 2009, Kim Garretson
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