In case I haven’t mentioned it in the last forty-eight seconds, I’m of largely Celtic descent. Sure, there’s a little American Indian tossed into the mix, but by and large I am a product of Ireland and Wales. (Me father he was orange and me mather, she was greeeeen…)
ANYWAY. I am a touch on the pale side, is what I’m getting at, here. And with the days of lying around in a bikini worshiping the Sun God long behind me (that is still considered ‘bad’, right? I have trouble keeping up with the latest medical news…), my always-considerable tendency to go from ‘fine’ to ‘extra crispy’ in about ten seconds flat has gone from tendency to count on it.
Plus, I started a new medication last week for my complete inability to get more than thirty minutes of sleep at a time, which lists among its numerous side effects (cripes, sometimes I wonder if the risks outweigh the benefits) increased sensitivity to sunlight and cautions me to ‘wear SPF 30 or greater’ (OK) and a hat (Not. Going. To. Happen. Sorry.) when out in same.
So naturally, when I went to California’s Great America theme park with Danger Mouse on Sunday, I took along sunscreen. I lathered it onto myself before I left the house, dropped it into my bag for the road, reapplied before we went into the park and again right after we had a shockingly bad AND expensive lunch in the park, when the sun was really beating on me. Or perhaps it was paying seven dollars and fifty cents for a greasy hot dog and a small bag of potato chips that got the heat rising under my collar.
Because, really. I expected the food would be on the expensive side, but they took it waaaaaaay too far on the high price / low quality scale.
(The food at Great America sucks. It is really, really awful. Even their funnel cake was ‘eh’ and again, pricy! Next time, I’m packing a cooler and we’ll just make the hike back out to the parking lot to eat our Forbidden Cheap And Good Fruit at the car. SO THERE!)
A couple hours later as we stood in line (in the sun) for the White Water Rapids, I felt strangely hot. Hot in a way that has nothing to do with the temperature of the air around you, but rather a kind of hot that says, “Hey, did you put your arm in the oven and forget about it?”
I took off my sunglasses and took a hard squint at my arm.
Oh. My. Gawd.
No. No. Nononononononono. No. That is not a sunburn…!
Because I am cool under pressure and also classy, I immediately yanked down the collar of my t-shirt, took one look at the color contrast between my breasts (white as the Cliffs of Dover) and my routinely exposed skin (henna) and yelled, “HOLY @*^&@, I’M REDDER THAN A MAINE LOBSTER RIGHT OUT OF THE POT!!!!”
Klass. Capital ‘K’. That’s me. It’s a wonder I didn’t turn to the people around us in line and demand that they compare my boobs with my neck to get a consensus opinion on the degree of sunburn I had achieved.
Infuriated, I immediately pulled my sunscreen out of my bag so I could find the 800 number and give the people over at Neutrogena a Piece! Of! My! Outraged! And! Also! Slightly! Blistered! Mind!!!!
It was then that I noticed a very important detail about the product I had been so liberally slathering on myself, and it was this: It wasn’t what I thought it was.
I thought I was using this:
Instead, I had grabbed this:
So…that hand lotion would have an SPF of…approximately…using round numbers…zero.
The really sad thing is, these bottles look nothing alike. I mean, same manufacturer and all, but the designs on the bottles are so utterly different that really…I can’t imagine how I didn’t notice I was smearing mere lotion on my body.
Id. Dee. Uht.
But…at least my charred skin is well moisturized.
I’m just…going back to my knitting, now…
Today is the start of the rest of our lives
3 weeks ago