That Girl’s Blog: Happy BRA-tober!

Who knew a pink ladder would cause such a commotion in a little village here on the Cape! Ok – perhaps it wasn’t the ladder but what it was decorated with: BRAS!  GASP!

Photo Credit: Chris Greim

By now, most people know that October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. When retailers are decorating with black and orange, many people will decorate with pink in an effort to start conversations and encourage women to make appointments for early screening for breast cancer.

Here on the Cape, it is more important than ever, as we seem to have some of the highest rates of breast cancer in the country. Over the years, I have come to realize there are very few people I know who have not been diagnosed or effected by breast cancer in one form or another.

Early detection is the best weapon.

It was once taboo to talk about breasts but, when faced with a possible life or death situation, even the most conservative folks have come to terms with many of the awareness campaigns.

A few years back, however, a few gentleman from a small fire station found out you can still earn a negative response from a positive effort.

The guys from the West Barnstable Fire Station decided to paint a ladder pink and put it up in front of the fire station. For a donation, women could hang a bra from the ladder. Approximately $500 was raised before complaints from residents forced the removal of the display.


I suppose Miss Manners would tell you that ladies “under-things” shouldn’t become “outer-things.” That said, I remember reading about the ladder and thinking it was a really great idea. At the time, I was working for Cape Cod Harley-Davidson in Pocasset. I knew SEVERAL customers (and employees) who had dealt with cancer and I offered to bring the ladder to our dealership on MacArthur Blvd. and keep up the conversation.

And it worked! I met more incredible women and heard more touching stories about humanity during the time we had that bra-slung ladder on display! So many people came to the dealership – many who had never been near a motorcycle, who just wanted to add a story, and a memento to the display.  

One morning I came to work and a young woman was tying paper hearts to each bra. We talked for a little while. We hugged and even cried a little. I also had several women tell me that after seeing the display, they called their doctor to make a long overdue appointment for a screening.

When was the last time you had a mammogram? When was your last chemo treatment? Who have you lost?

Maybe, just maybe, if we talk and take action, we might be able to save someone.

PS: I know where there is a pink ladder just WAITING to help start a conversation!

To learn more about scheduling a mammogram, please call your doctor. You can also find information here: Dana-Farber

Comments or questions? Email Me: 

About Cat Wilson

Cat Wilson is "That Girl" on Cape Country 104 – a Cape Cod native and longtime Cape radio personality. She is a passionate supporter of Military and Veteran causes on the Cape and also hosts local music spotlight program, “The Cheap Seats” on Ocean 104.7.
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