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A Penny Saved

Lori is frugal by nature. She got that from her mother Erma, who was born to German Lutheran parents on a small farm in Iowa with no electricity or running water. “We didn’t have a pot to pee in” was how she frequently put it and it sounds like it wasn’t far from the truth. Lori absorbed these life lessons and to this day we turn salad dressing bottles upside down until we get every last drop and add water to dish soap or shampoo to extract any stubborn remnants from them. I admire her commitment and don’t complain, much. But there are times when it can be tricky. For example, the other day I was told that we had a bunch of sunscreen sticks to use up. Those things that look like oversized lip balms, but are meant to rub on your face, I guess? They seem especially goopy and Vaseline-like when they go on, being both uncomfortable and hard to really spread evenly. So, I generally avoid them, which is probably why we have so many of them around still needing to be used.

Lori announced a new campaign to use these up. So I grabbed one out of the sunscreen pocket from the organizer that hangs behind our closet door. Without my reading glasses, which is another item that I endeavor to keep at hand, but rarely manage to actually find, all I could really see was a tube of the right size and shape that had come from the designated sunscreen repository. But something about the branding didn’t quite sit right with me (I am in marketing after all). I decided that before I smeared it all over my face, I should investigate whether it was not sunscreen at all but instead Preparation H or maybe Nair. I tossed it to Lori and asked “are you sure this is sunscreen?” She looked it over and started laughing as she said not to use it after all. It was a glue stick.


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