It’s ironic that the newspaper article on the new miracle cure for baldness hit the streets on the same day I decided to dim the lights at my Hastings Community Centre step class. The Hastings gym, oriented in a north-south direction, has windows oriented on the east and west walls. This causes two pools of light to spill onto the floor. I chose one of these pools to perform a forward split stretch to end the class.

I bent forward. My head caught the sun ray and reflected a beam of light. The beam resembled the godlike laser in the Raiders of the Lost Arc. Indiana Jones used sun light through a prism to at dawn to guide him to the location of buried treasure. I just used my head.

While Indiana’s treasure, a religious relic that led to a Hollywood chase spanning three continents, mine was better. The treasures in my class wore Spandex shorts and tank tops. Indiana’s prize: A bruised and battered body and the movie heroine. Mine: a chorus of groans as the beam penetrated my participants’ retinal nerves.

For those who don’t know me, I stand about 5 feet 10 inches (or 177.8 centipedes for those who have metrically mellowed over the years.) While I stand 5 feet 10 inches, my haircut only stands 5 feet 9 inches. I’m as bald as a baby’s elbow on top.

“Get some Propecia!” a participant shouted while using her forearm to deflect the death ray from her face. She read the Vancouver Sun article on the wonder drug.

“No way,” I said. I read the article too.

I read that they use the drug to treat enlarged prostate glands. That’s all I need – having my prostrate gland shriveling up to the size of a pea. Worse, the article mentioned a drop in sex drive experienced by 2% of those who tried it. My sole purpose for teaching aerobics has always been sex driven.

Suppose Iasked my sweetie out for a post-cardio cappuccino. Then suppose I couldn’t perform – all because I spent time swallowing a pill as part of a follicle reforestation program. Shame on me.

There is one other side effect. Nobody knows whether long term side effects exist. I can identify one long term effect. Once one starts taking it, one needs to keep on taking it or else it won’t work. There’s also no guarantee here either. That sounds like an addiction to me. Rather than fueled by physical and psychological needs, Propecia addiction feeds on hope and vanity.

So far, I’ve survived quite well with my head of pate. I think I’ll keep it. If I begin to feel guilty about blinding my participants, I’ll wear a hat.


Mike Broderick is an Employment Specialist for the Neil Squire Society in Burnaby where he finds employment for people with physical disabilities. Part of this work means affiliation with the Vancouver Board of Trade where he is a member of the Ambassador Club, the Burnaby Board of Trade where he is a member of the Labour Task Force, the Tri Cities Chamber of Commerce where he is an active member of the 10X10 initiative, and the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce. He also does some work as a field Archaeologist. He is also a fitness instructor and frequent contributor of fitness humour articles to alive  

You can reach him at home at michael_broderick@telus.net or at michaelb@neilsquire.ca. re looking for a change, start with a resume makeover at competitive rates

When he is not doing all the above, he lives in Port Coquitlam with his partner Cecelia



  1. Rose A. Valenta Says:

    I enjoyed reading that. Thanks for the laugh!

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