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Wednesday, Aug. 24, 2016

A few burning issues

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

While my wife has a lot of great qualities, common sense is not always one of them. As a matter of fact, I think somewhere along the way she lost her common sense and just has not been able to find it.

I trace it back to a float trip down Current River 12 years ago. While we lived in Poplar Bluff we were visited by some friends for a weekend and we all decided to go floating. We threw on our swimsuits, rented some tubes and away we went down the water.

The trip was harmless enough, until about 30 minutes in someone asked for some sunscreen. Let's just say that nobody said, "here it is." The sun was shining bright and the water was both clear and cold and I knew the day was not going to end well.

You see about a year before on a spring break trip to Florida I had asked my cousin for some sunscreen when we were at the beach. I was handed a tube, rubbed it on and proceeded to get sun poisoning. I later looked at the tube and saw that it was sun tanning oil instead of sunscreen. It was the first time I had ever sunburned and I can still remember the miserable feeling of driving home the 13 hours in unreal pain.

So I knew that somebody was going to be feeling that same thing. Fortunately for the guys we were both pretty dark and I was pretty sure I could survive without a bad burn. The ladies weren't so lucky.

My wife and her friend burned so badly they looked like sunburned lobsters. They went to a store that night and bought a cart-full of lotions, sprays and anything they could find to cool down the burn.

The next day, after a sleepless night, the ladies could hardly put on clothes and their skin was starting to blister. I sort of felt sorry for them but I was too busy counting my blessings that the sun gods spared me.

My wife had to go to the doctor, miss about a week of work and to this day still has a tan line from that fateful float trip. So you would think that every time she went out in the sun she would use sunscreen, right?

Not my lovely wife. I can no longer count the number of times my wife has been sunburned since that scarring float trip. Meanwhile, I carry sunscreen in my camera bag in case I am going to be out in the sun for a long period of time. They call it common sense.

I guess my wife doesn't see the logic. A few years ago she went over to a friend's house to sit out in the pool during the middle of the day. To her dismay, when she got home she was burned to a crisp. Once again she had to visit the doctor who I am surprised didn't knock her upside her blistered head with his stethoscope.

Of course, I asked her if she had used sunscreen and she replied "I didn't realize I was getting that much sun." I guess the bright, blinding light that kept beating down on her didn't sink in.

Fast forward to Monday when my wife decides to go to the same friend's house to sit out in the pool. I recall saying, "don't get sunburned." Typical to most of our marriage I apparently was ignored.

After just two hours in the sun my wife came home to go to work and she was a splendid shade of red. As a matter of fact, I think they are going to use her shoulders as a model for a St. Louis Cardinals baseball cap because they are so red.

I could only shake my head as I asked her if she used sunscreen. I obviously knew the answer before she responded "No. I was only out there a couple hours and I didn't realize I was getting that much sun."

Then I figured it out. My wife actually lost her common sense 12 years ago and it is still floating around Current River somewhere. Now I have refused to go floating with her since that scarring day but if anybody sees it, could you please return it to her. You'll know it because it is labeled SPF 70.

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David Jenkins
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