Well, with summer approaching my thoughts turn once again to the same things it turns every year.
Iced tea and lemonade, watermelon and cherries, grilled food of all sorts, how to keep sand out of my house with beach volleyball season in full swing, and the colour (or lack thereof) of my skin.
As many of you may know, I have many middle names. “Tanned” is certainly not one of them.
One time I started tanning, I believe in support of my older sister for her wedding. And it was amazing. The LIGHTS, the WARMTH, the HUM! All so hypnotic and mind-numbingly wonderful. I know it’s bad for you and I have no desire to be a leathery, wrinkled hag at 34 (I’m aiming for 42) so my addiction was brief, but the memory is lasting.
And one time I actually got real-life tanned, and it was in Mexico. The LIGHTS, the WARMTH, the RUM!
Also hypnotic and mind-numbingly wonderful. But I looked like a 4-year-old who fell full-bodied into her mom’s bronzer.
Alas, I have had to come to terms with the fact that I rather like my mind un-numbed, and I am fair of skin and prone to pinkness. Also, I don’t like being hot. The warmth of a tanning bed or a beach in Mexico with ocean breezes is totally different from the heat of the actual regular outdoors, and past 26 degrees I’m pretty much zeroing in on the nearest shade so I can sit unmoving until the heat wave passes.
On the one hand I don’t have to worry about how I look in my bathing suit since people are too blinded by my glare to see the state of my abs. On the other hand, said glare may result in being mistaken for a beached beluga and shoved out to sea by some well-meaning marine biologists. That’s a risk I have to be willing to take.
I am not that lovely alabaster white that goes with dark hair and red lips (think Snow White and Audrey Hepburn), just run-of-the-mill sickly, but I’m ok with it.
Basically, I think everyone should embrace their natural skin colour and own it. Partly because I know there are lots more of you out there with white skin and really, it’s easier to start a trend when you’re not alone.
But mainly because that really is the way God made some of us, and it’s beautiful to be you! Down with skin cancer and wrinkles!
But also partly because I don’t want to be the only glowstick on the beach this summer.
LOVE it!!! You are SO funny… and made me have a GREAT laugh!!!! BUT… a couple of problems…. FIRST… does the you can’t handle 26 degrees mean that we won’t be getting to see you in sunny hot Australia??? SECOND… well… not really a problem… BUT… I think you look GREAT! White skin and all!!! THIRD… good idea for you not to tan… it is not good for you AT ALL!!! FOURTH…. One thing that works for us out here… is hanging out the laundry in the sun in a tank top…. A good 10-15 minutes out there and by the end of summer a NATURAL looking tan!!! BUT… having a tan is not worth the pain… the blisters… the sun stroke… the wrinkles… the red and peeling of getting burnt!!!
It’s true Sharon, the heat is a pretty big hurdle for me coming to Australia – maybe with all your crazy weather you will have a cold snap? Then I can come :)
That would be a GREAT dream!!! A cold snap!!! Then you wouldn’t have the true Aussie feel!!! SO… How about making it an october… or a May visit?!?!? Yep… I am dreaming…. BUT… they are great times of the year!!!!
Justine Russo says
hahahahaha oh Anna I LOVE this post!
I know what you mean about it being too hot psaat 26! I am not sure how I will survive the Okanagan this summer!
After years of burning and peeling, I have embraced my glow-in-the-dark skin and yogurt legs…and stopped wearing short shorts (you’re welcome world) and bathing suits :P:P Once again your writing made me chuckle…you may actually be extending my life. I hope that is good news to you ;)
lol this makes me smile. maybe we should glow to the beach together ? :)
Sara Ludwig says
I am a hat & sunscreen gal and try to be very careful since my grandma has skin cancer and it’s NO fun. Keep in mind even black people can get bad sunburns. My hair is almost black and I’d never wear red lipstick…it makes your skin even paler or brings out any blemish…:-) Keep in mind, your husband thinks your sexy and your kids think you are an awesome mom…and you won’t lose your friends for not having a tan. :-)
I hear ya, Anna. I’ll be thinking of you while I seek the shade this summer.