The Biggest Guy We Know
I met Howard five minutes into the first day of college after being placed into the same wilderness orientation group. We soon found ourselves debating the realities of Michael Vick's speed rating in Madden '04 (I said gratuitous, he thought completely justified). After returning from four days on the Appalachian Trail and playing hundreds of games of Madden testing our aforementioned Vick speed theories, we became pretty inseparable.
When you meet Howard for the first time there's no denying one quality about him: BIG. It's easy to comprehend his physical stature. The over-sized head, "pumpkin" shoulders, and barrel chest. But the full Howard experience isn't achieved until you've heard the guy laugh. It's the greatest laugh in the world. You know that feeling when someone sneezes and it's hard not to sneeze? Same thing happens with Howard's laugh. It's a loud, infectious cloud of positivity that towers over a room.
But that's just the way the BIG guy lives his life. He's always in search of something he calls "Pos Vibes" where he surrounds himself with good people doing awesome things. You see this in the way he listens and hear it when he jokes or exercises his encyclopedic knowledge of sports, wrestling, pop-culture, and food. Just engage him in a conversation about Tim Riggins' quotes and watch him go. He's just a happy guy.
The foundation of this ethos was tested about a year ago when Howard received a phone call we all fear. His mother had been diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer. Howard immediately cancelled his San Francisco job hunt and moved back to Denver where his parents had lived for the past 30 years. He wanted to be close to his mom. To support her however he could. To pass along his Pos Vibes.
In August of 2016 Momma Hsu lost her battle with cancer. It was devastating. I remember getting on the phone with Howard afterwards and his spirits being surprisingly high. He told me that he was able to find closure around the experience and that the past year had been difficult but incredibly special for him and his mom. His attitude was inspiring.
In the wake of her passing my friend Dan and I wanted to surprise Howard. We began brainstorming, telling our favorite Howard stories over a few too many brewskis. Our goal was to surprise Howard and defeat cancer all at once.
Then we remembered his go-to party trick from college - The Stone Cold beer bash, a move Howard picked up from his favorite wrestler The Texas Rattlesnake, Stone Cold Steve Austin. We had countless videos of Howard amping up a room by "Stone Colding."
We asked ourselves - could we repurpose "Stone Colding" - the perfect art of pouring two beers on yourself - to raise awareness around cancer and destroy it once and for all? It worked for ALS with the ice bucket challenge. Why not us?
#StoneColdCancer was born.
The Stone Cold Cancer slogan is "Kicking the crap out of cancer...two beverages at a time." With your help creating videos, donating to the V foundation, and passing along the Pos Vibes message we believe this movement can do great things for the advancement of cancer research and pave a pathway to a cure.
Our message is simple: Play more. Have fun. Cherish life. Beat cancer.
Howard, man, we love you. You're without a doubt the BIGGEST guy we know.
-Zap and Resnick