You know, when I was growing up, a tan was a desirable thing. It was an "obvious" indicator of good health first of all and then of course, the fashion industry dug in and decided that a golden tan was the perfect thing to set off summer whites!
Back then, kids played outside all day long with no sunscreen because nobody knew that we needed it yet. Teens slathered up with baby oil and intentionally lay out in the sun so that by the end of summer. Moms and Dads congregated out on the patio with friends and neighbors, drinks in hand over the weekend enjoying a BBQ. People played tennis and golf for exercise. Or they had jobs that necessitated being outdoors all day long. Nobody protected themselves and consequently most everyone was very tan.
Quite a change from the Victorian era where women, in particular, were covered from their necks to their fingertips to their toes. If they were outside, of course, they were also further protected from the elements by way of both a large hat AND a parasol. They wore gloves to protect the delicate skin of their hands and multiple layers of clothing at all times. I do not understand how they did not all perish from heat stroke, but I'm certain that they all had skin like alabaster.
Nowadays, most of us have reached for the middle ground. We understand the dangers of too much sun but we also know the health benefits of exposure to Vitamin D. So Sun Screen and weather appropriate clothing it is!
We have all seen those funny photos of people with amusing tans. The photos above show a few of them. The so-called farmers tan, which is practically iconic at this point. The contrast between the tanned arms, neck and face and the practically glow in the dark white torso is blinding. Then of course the sunglasses tan. Unless you are well slathered with sunscreen over the entire face so as to avoid any tan at all, the sunglasses tan is nearly unavoidable. But my favourite in this series is that poor devil who was obviously wearing a tank top and didn't get the memo about sunscreen. I bet that hurts. Ouch!
I do use sunscreen. Nearly every day I faithfully put it on. I'm not very good about re-applying though. And shame on me. I do know better. Consequently, I do have a bit of a tan. When we moved to Colorado I started wearing sunscreen daily. Colorado is not only a very sunny place (more than 300 sunny days each year!) it's also much closer to the sun. Mile High City. Think about it! So anyway, when we moved to Florida, getting accustomed to wearing sunscreen was not something new to me. The thing that was a surprise was my own funny tans. Yup there are two of them. Here's the first:
I present you with, the sandal tan. I wear sandals almost every day. And while they are not the same pair, their are the same brand and so, other than being different colours, they are very VERY similar. Leaving me with these ridiculous looking stripes on my feet! It's not really noticeable most of the time. Unless, for some reason, I choose to wear a different pair of shoes. Like say, a cute pair of flats! And then it looks like this:
That is hilarious! It almost looks like I"m wearing some weird MaryJane type shoes doesn't it! LOL !!! Excuse me a moment while I pull myself together. HHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Ok. I'm fine now ;)
I recently discovered an even funnier funny tan of my own. I call them my tiger stripes. Are you ready for this? Are you sure? Ok, here goes. See if you can guess what this is:
That's the back of my elbow when it's bent. How funny is that? See the stripes? The first time I noticed it I was in front a mirror putting sunscreen on the back of my neck because I had my hair up in a ponytail. And I saw those stripes and said to myself, "Yuck! How did your elbows get so dirty?" So I scrubbed and scrubbed and then checked and it was still there! Not dirt!
It took me a few minutes to realize...ohhhhh, when my arm is just down and relaxed, the elbows get all wrinkley and the inside of the wrinkles aren't exposed to the sun to they do not tan! Of course! Is that the funniest thing you've seen so far today?? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!
Oh my stars and garters as my Nana used to say. I have tiger stripes! HAHAHAHAHAHA :)
Elbows aren't pretty anyway. They just are not. Probably one of the least pretty parts of the human body. They serve a great purpose but as far as attractiveness goes...nope. I have never read a poets, "Ode to an elbow". I've never seen a sad story about someone missing another's persons elbow or heard of them first being attracted to the another person's elbow. Face yes, eyes, smile, legs....but never elbow. And there is a reason for that.
Elbow and Uggo rhyme. Coincidence? I think not.
So anyway there it is. Sam Funny Tans.
I suspect that the reason I didn't have funny tans in Colorado was because I was at work all day during the week and then on the weekend we were always playing catch up with chores and errands so my only time in the sun was late in the day. No danger there. And now, I am outside in the sunshine a great portion of every day, walking here and there, getting stuff done and also, obviously, acquiring a funny tan.
Wear your sunscreen people or you too, could develop the dreaded Funny Tan!
Yup, this is me. Some people said, "Sam, you should write a Blog". "Well, there's a thought", I thought to myself. And so here it is.