We all love a good game and knocking out colon cancer, so why not put the two together? That’s exactly what the good people at Geekade are doing as they set out to help further our mission by hosting their 24-hour PITAthon! We got a chance to speak with Kris Randazzo, the Editor-in-Chief of the website to learn more about this unique twist on fundraising.
Tell us a little about yourself!
My name is Kris Randazzo and I'm Editor-in-Chief of Geekade. Along with my partners Dean DeFalco and Evan Goldstein, I run Geekade.com, which is a geek website dedicated to creating original content centered on anything one can be passionate about. I'm married to a wonderful woman named Karen and I have an awesome son named John and a daughter on the way. For as long as I can remember, I've been fascinated with video games. Ever since my parents bought me my first Atari 2600 Jr. at Kay-Bee Toys, games have been lighting my imagination on fire. As such, I've become something of a crazy-person collector. I currently own over 2,500 games and 120 systems. Outside of video games, I'm just your average colossal geek. I read comics, I love cartoons and I love Star Wars.
What's the PITAthon and how'd you come up with the idea?
PITAthon stands for Pain-in-the-Ass-a-Thon. A few years ago my partner Dean and I tried to do a 24-hour charity streaming event on a very small scale. We wound up raising a little money, but let's just say we weren't very well organized back then. However, we've wanted to do something like it ever since. I've always had an affinity for difficult and/or bad video games, and watching people play them can be very entertaining because they're a real pain in the ass to play. So I came up with the idea to do a 24-hour live stream where Geekade staff members play pain-in-the-ass games. You know, colon cancer...Pain in the ass? I'm a sucker for puns.
On August 20, starting at 10:00 AM EST, at www.twitch.tv/geekade, we're all going to gather together and play some very painful games for at least 24 hours straight and hopefully raise some money for the Colon Cancer Alliance. Here's hoping our frustration turns into some good comedy. We're going to try our best to beat some legendarily tough games including Link: Faces of Evil, which is one of the absolutely awful CD-i Legend of Zelda games, and Mega Man: The Wily Wars. This is a 16-bit remake of the first 3 NES Mega Man games, and old school Mega Man games are hard! There's a ton of other games we'll be playing too, so stay tuned.
What inspired you to join the cause and raise money to help knock out colon cancer?
Several years ago, my wife lost her father to colon cancer. Almost every year since, her family has been involved in the annual Colon Cancer Challenge. But this year, things didn't line up and they missed participating. Every year watching her try to raise funds for the Colon Cancer Challenge was very inspirational, and her ability to help out in the department of beating colon cancer has always meant a lot to her and her family. Coupling that with my love of difficult games, it all just made too much sense not to do it. My sister is a cancer survivor (leukemia), so any cancer research is about as worthy a cause as one could possibly donate to; with colon cancer being the particular pain in the ass it is, it was just the right thing to do. I know some other Geekade staffers have had their lives affected by colon cancer too, so this charity clicked right away with the team.
How can others learn more about the marathon and get involved?
We're going to be posting all manner of stuff about the stream on our website as well as on all forms of social media that we inhabit. We're on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, the whole nine yards.
Is there anything else you'd like to add?
I just really hope we can raise some money for you guys. We've never really done anything on this scale before, so it's going to be quite a learning experience. So, if there are technical difficulties, please bear with us. That said, we're going to have a blast with these old games. We've got some prizes lined up to give away to folks who tune in, so come watch us suffer! We promise it will be a good time. And a very serious thank you to the folks at the Colon Cancer Alliance. You all have been so enthusiastic and helpful so far, and everyone at Geekade greatly appreciates it. Thanks for your help and we'll see you on August 20!
Don’t forget, the Colon Cancer Alliance serves as a source of information about colon health. If you have additional questions about colon cancer screening or are in need of support, please contact our free Helpline at (877) 422-2030. We’re here to help.