Wear Your Sun Protection, Kids

JFK taught men of my generation to scorn hats. Harrison Ford made them cool again. Skin cancer made them a must.


Behold my Joe Pickett Stetson. Since Donna gave it to me three years ago, it’s mostly stayed in its box. Can’t get stained or damaged that way, right? After all, it was expensive!

Well, so’s that wristwatch … many times more so … yet I wear it often, exposing it to hard knocks, nicks, and scratches. Joe Pickett wears his Stetson every day, rain or shine (or snow, or grizzlies, or bad guys in black Stetsons). What the hell was I thinking? Donna gave it to me to wear. And I’m a-wearin’ it, better late than never!

Speaking of wear, Mister B, our 15-year-old dachshund, gets stiffer by the day. It’s mostly his hips, we think, but it’s hard to tell. In the morning he hobbles around as if he’s learning to walk on peg legs. Then, at dinnertime, he races the two younger dogs down the hall to the kitchen. I left him home when I took Lulu and Fritzi out this morning, thinking that’s what he wanted, but when we got home he gave me stinkeye. We figure it’s arthritis, worse some days than others, and there’s not much to be done about it.

The corner drug store was all out of eclipse glasses, so we decided to stay indoors and watch the big event on TV. Here in Tucson, we were only going to get a partial occlusion, anyway. But as totality approached, it got noticeably darker outside, so at the exact time (11:20 a.m.) I stepped out front. Looking directly away from the sun, I took a quick over-the-shoulder iPhone shot, aiming toward where I thought the sun was. I tried to do it quickly so as not to damage the sensor, which I admit was stupid. Once again, what was I thinking?


Anyhow, this is the result. At first glance, I was all “Where’s the eclipse?” Then I looked lower and saw a smaller sun with a bite taken out of it. I don’t know what’s going on here. A reflection? An overloaded camera sensor? Some kind of photomechanical compensation?

Since then I’ve seen photos posted by others, also showing two suns, so it’s not just me.

And, even though it cannot be, my retinas feel like they’re frying every time I look at the photo. My vision whites out, just as it does after looking at the actual sun. Such is the power of all those warnings we’ve been exposed to over the past week. Shit, it’s happening right now, a full day later, just inserting the photo into this blog post.

Will my iPhone ever forgive me? Not only for pointing it at the sun, but for all the awful selfies?

Stay fresh, cheese bags!

One thought on “Wear Your Sun Protection, Kids

  • I got a basel cell skin cancer on the side of my nose in the ’80s, probably from a youth spent in the fierce tropical Alabama sun. Easily cured with surgery, not even a scar but I always wear a baseball cap or boonie hat.
    But never sunscreen. I’m not smearing unknown industrial GRAS chemicals on my precious skin. Because I don’t generally recognize them as safe.
    Of course ball caps don’t protect ears and neck so I bought a Mexican straw cowboy hat at the local ‘thrift’ shop last week for $2.70. It is the coolest hat I’ve every had in the sun but not without drawbacks: can’t lean back in my recliner or gravity chair; easily crushed and fragile; can’t wear hearing protection so I can’t mow the lawn with it. Trying to decide if it makes me look silly as hell or sexy as Antonio Bandares.
    “…arthritis, worse some days than others, and there’s not much to be done about it.” That pretty much sums up my life of pain. And when I roll out of bed or I recliner sit for too long “…he hobbles around as if he’s learning to walk on peg legs.” describes me as as well as Mister B.
    NSAIDS and hydrocodone make me queasy so cannabis is my daily drug of choice until my lungs give up. Does squat for pain but pleasantly distracting. And it might help my primitive blues bass playing. Certainly you do need to suffer to play the blues and I’m getting better every day. Too bad you can’t get MB to do PT, one thing that does help.
    Last partial eclipse here in Great Valley country I took pics of tree shadows and each dappled dot was crescent shaped. Very cool.
    Tod recently posted…Cheapskate Tips: Fix Up An Old House While Living In itMy Profile

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