It’s Enough to Make You Turn Orange

Ah, the joys of summer. A true desert rat, Miss Crankypants spent her childhood baking in the Arizona sun. In fact, she bets Phoenix is the only city in the country where a baby’s first word is “HOT!”
And where the most popular sport, aside from screaming at other drivers, is tanning. Outdoors, the old-fashioned way. Even now, many Arizonans walk around looking like bronze gods and goddesses–except for the white rings around the eyes where their sunglasses sit.

Yes, we’re a nation of sun worshippers. So naturally, the good Lord made Miss CP’s skin the brightest white on the planet.
She fondly remembers applying baby oil to ensure a darker tan, rolling from back to front as if she were on a giant rotisserie. She learned to make sure both sides of her body were exposed for the same amount of time after ending up resembling an Oompah-Loompah.
And the burns! Miss Crankypants never met a blister that didn’t like her. She broiled so red, she could have taken out stock in tea bags and aloe plants. If she wore green she looked like the Italian flag!
But that was then. As in before The Sun Will Kill You warnings forced us all to go around so covered up that only our zinc oxide-slathered noses are visible.
These days, the sun is so dangerous that you practically need a permit to bask in it. Aside from the awful Big C possibility, we’re more aware than ever of the perils of UVA and UVB exposure. We use more sunscreen and fake tan gunk than an astronaut stuck on the planet Mercury’s hot side. We plead with our teens to please please please quit using those tanning beds–in case one of those beds is really a time travel machine that whisks the occupant away from cleaning her room.
But what about the dangers of turning impossibly orange?

Aack! Use your sunscreen, people!

Miss Cranky knows all about fake tan horror stories. Why? Because she’s an expert at turning orange all the places you definitely DO NOT want to turn orange. Have you ever seen neon orange ankles, knees or elbows? Trust Miss CP, the soles of one’s feet do not look any better when dyed with Coppertone.
She didn’t know you can’t just squeeze the fake tan goo all over yourself and put on the timer.
What about spray-on tans, you ask? Too spendy–especially if you plan to bathe in the near future.
This summer, Miss Crankypants thinks she’ll just stay an Oregon-never-see-the-sun shade of white and call it good.

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About Linda S. Clare

I'm an author, speaker, writing coach and mentor. I teach both fiction and nonfiction writing at Lane Community College and in the doctoral program as expert writing advisor for George Fox University. I love helping writers improve their craft and I'm both an avid reader and writer of stories about those with wounded hearts.

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