Pledges: These Cup Match ribbons come with cards explaining how you can donate to a cancer walk in the US. *Photo supplied
Pledges: These Cup Match ribbons come with cards explaining how you can donate to a cancer walk in the US. *Photo supplied
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I’ve got lots of positive memories of my childhood days but not too many of Cup Match. 

I don’t recall our parents taking us to the annual game but we did picnic a lot during Cup Match — oftentimes at the now popular Black Bay beach. 

We spent hours in the water there until our skin shrivelled. 

But the one thing that has always been — and always been noticed since I was a child — was the healthy, competitive bantering that took place between fans of the opposing sides. Happily, it continues today.My parents dressed my sister and I in St George’s colours and we followed that tradition for many years until I made the switch, much to my sister’s chagrin, almost 20 years ago. 

The camaraderie that permeates throughout every area of our island during Cup Match can only be compared to that of the after effects of a hurricane to the island. 

Regardless of race, colour, political persuasion or parish, Bermudians come together.  We talk “trash” to our rivals, yet at the same time, sit together to eat, drink, and be merry — without hostility. Even in houses divided on Cup Match team loyalties, love prevails.

So my sister, Shari-Lynn Pringle, as diehard a St. George’s fan as she is a Dallas Cowboys supporter, decided to put Cup Match colours to good use by engaging in her third year of ribbon banditry. 

In October she will take the Susan G. Komen Three-day walk in Philadelphia, touted “the boldest breast cancer event in history” to raise funds for those afflicted with cancer. 

Family and friends have shared the free Cup Match ribbons — which are attached to the card with website access information for donations. And even though the ribbon banditry has raised over $800 just from the ribbon concept alone, I can’t help noticing that I don't have many dark blue and light blue ribbons left. 

I suppose this is one sure way to confirm that there are more Somerset fans among us!  

But despite the fact that we are supporters of opposing teams, I commend my sister for making this bold decision to walk in honour of our maternal grandmother who succumbed to breast cancer — and to all the men and women who have been afflicted with and by this disease. 

There were 81 reported cases of breast cancer in 2011, according to the Bermuda Cancer and Health Centre.

My sister is only $500 away from her goal of $2,300 but even if you haven’t been able to receive your favorite team’s ribbons, you can support her venture via the link: http://www.the3day.org/goto/Sharilynn or simply email her for other options at shaeyd@gmail.com 

When asked why she was undertaking this event, Shari commented: “I turn 50 in October and I’ve always wanted to support this event. I thought I could represent myself as a team of one, which is called Breast in Bermuda.” 

So I asked why she would support this event instead of a diabetic event for her birthday and her response was thought-provoking.  “Because diabetes can be reversed through diet, exercise and lifestyle changes; breast cancer cannot.”

I’d love to see the spirit of Cup Match extend beyond the days before the big event continue every day of the year. 

It’ll get us closer to the way we used to be.  Happy Cup Match, Bermuda – and may the best team win!  Oh, and by the way, if the east end supporters need these extra ribbons I’m carrying around, feel free to stop me on the street — or send me an email. 

Shawnette Somner is a mother and educator.  Email: ss911@myhome.bm