pinkbucket

KFC wants us to eat breasts for breast cancer.

Until I saw KFC’s “Buckets for the Cure” campaign, I’d always been in awe of the Susan G. Komen marketing machine. There are even power tools with the signature pink ribbons. A few months ago when I was looking for my 2010 At-A-Glance monthly calendar, there were breast cancer versions with lots of pink-bordered pages.

But big, pink buckets of greasy, fried chicken? That feels all kinds of wrong.

Still, I always choose the pink version when I have a choice of, say, a regular box of Ritz or one that supports breast cancer research. These days, pink is unavoidable: everything from special edition laptops to power tools have a Komenesque version.

Already, there are nearly 30 different colors for ribbons, each representing a different cause, including lace, which symbolizes osteoporosis. There isn’t one for obesity, but if there were, what color would it be?

Or maybe it should be a ribbon in the shape of a treadmill. Or a scale. Or an exercise bike.

The problem is, obesity doesn’t have the same appeal as breast cancer. (OK. That’s one of the strangest sentences I’ve ever written.) What I mean is, it doesn’t elicit the empathy or concern of a devastating, incurable disease. Nor should it, I suppose. But let’s not forget obesity increases one’s risk of all types of cancers and diseases for which there already are a range of ribbons.

I bet you didn’t know June was Obesity Awareness Month. (OK. I didn’t either until I just Googled it.) How about from now until then, we come up with a marketing plan to increase awareness. Maybe even design and sell our own little scale pins.

And maybe I’ll order some “Less Leslie” mugs or water bottles, and stage some contests throughout the month. Winners get a free mug, or a free gym membership, if we can get some sponsors (hint, hint, readers).

But please, no big, pink buckets of chicken – although according to news reports, KFC’s already raised $2 million for the Cure. That’s wonderful.

Just not for obesity. However, I recently tried the grilled chicken. Not bad!

But seriously, folks, let’s have some fun with this, maybe hold some online competitions, lighten things up.

Hey! Lighten Up! We could have little lightbulb pins . . .

A soldier will fight long and hard for a bit of colored ribbon. ~  Napoleon Bonaparte

Leslie J. Ansley is an award-winning journalist and entrepreneur who blogs daily for TheRoot. She lives in Raleigh, NC.