Two Times I Turned Tragedy Around

posted in: Day In The Life 14
Lemonade, anyone? A label from a lemonade brand ca. 1925. Image: Wikipedia.




Tragic things happen to me all the time. But I sally forth.

Take, for example, the time I dumped an entire pot of piping hot, black tea on my new-ish cream-colored carpet. Oh, yes, it really happened. My tea tray was set out nicely — or so I thought — on my sofa table, but in fact it was only halfway upon that table. When I went to prepare my first cup of tea, I took the honeypot off the tray and, floop! The entire operation went off the edge and the pot of hot, hot tea flipped through the air with the greatest of ease and sploosh! Tea everywhere.

But did I cry over spilt tea? Yes! Of course I did! This was a disaster.

But remember: I sally forth.

As I ran into the kitchen, howling in anguish, wailing “Why?? Why???!” I knew that I needed to do one very, very important thing: Right before I ran back out with the 3 rolls of paper towels I snatched from below the sink … I put the kettle back on. I had to! I need tea in the morning! Yes, there was a ruinous tea stain spreading ever-wider by the second into my new-ish carpet, but let’s not panic, here, Mary. Let’s not lose our very minds. In my pain, I still knew enough to think, “If you put the kettle on now, by the time you clean this up, you can have that cup of tea you tried to have 30 seconds ago.”

I’ll give you another example. This one happened this very morning.

There I am in the bathroom, tending to my morning ablutions* and I’m still a bit winky (i.e., tired.) I reach into my dopp kit for my moisturizer, which comes in a tube thing with a snap top. I squirt out a glob of it onto my hands and I’m really rubbing into the old mug when I think, “Hm … That smells different, almost like — aggghh!”

I had put hair styling creme on my face. All over my face!

This was a true disaster, one on the level of the tea on the carpet. I will be 39 years old a month from tomorrow, yet I deal with breakouts as much as I ever did in high school, it seems. Slathering my face with a hair product? Bad. Very bad. I might as well just taken a stick of butter out of the fridge and used that all over my face, except butter has fewer additives and weird polymers than hair goop.

But remember: I sally forth.

When I realized I had a thick layer of hair creme all over my face, I grabbed my face wash and a towel and was just about to remove the stuff when I thought: “Well, now hang on. That’s good hair product!” So I smeared some off my face and rubbed it into the ends of my hair, my eyes squinched shut tight so none of what was on my face would sting my eyeballs. After I felt like I had gotten some where it was supposed to go (hair), then I washed my face.

Bon courage, mon amis! Bon courage!


*a favorite word among PaperGirl readers, which is why I love PaperGirl readers

14 Responses

  1. Beverly
    | Reply

    Love your articles and your attitude.

  2. Linda
    | Reply

    Mary Fons, you are truly one of a kind, just love you to pieces ☕️

  3. Deb Kimball
    | Reply

    “Sally forth,” is my mantra. Happy (and relieved) to know I am not alone.

  4. Marcia Hicks
    | Reply

    Way to save that precious hair product Mary! Sally forth my dear!!

  5. Kathlene
    | Reply

    Oh my! I’m reading this after I’ve turned lights out. Trying not to laugh out loud (and not succeeding. Sorry hubby!”). Hilarious Mary! I thought I was the only one who did stuff like that. But we keep on. Or as our family called it, carry-on mode. We just “carry on.” I would tell you about the time I loaded the entire coffee maker for a fresh pot and forgot to put the pot under the spout but I’m running out of space.

  6. Cathy
    | Reply

    You kill me!! I once spilled a bowl of red salsa on my white carpet!!! I did cry and scrubbed that stain forever before it went away!! I love your attitude and your sense of humor!!! Thanks!!!

  7. Barb Allen
    | Reply

    I am from Oklahoma, where we say “keep on truckin’, y’all.” Love you, Mary, and wish I were your neighbor!

  8. kathy in buffalo
    | Reply

    wouldn’t it be something if you found out the hair product worked better than the moisturizer?

    • Melinda Seegers
      | Reply

      Now that’s making lemonade out of lemons!

  9. Rebecca Koster
    | Reply

    You crack me up! I’m glad it was only a hair product! As I was reading I thought it might be tooth paste or hemorriod cream!
    An editing oops that I feel compelled to tell you about though… “Mon” is the masculine singular possessive adjective, “amis” is a plural noun. “Mes amis” is what you want to use to include all of us!

  10. Georgia O'Neal
    | Reply

    OK Mary – have you ever sprayed your armpits with hairspray and your hair with deodorant ??? Or brushed your teeth with antibiotic ointment in a tube ? Just askin

  11. Melanie
    | Reply

    I was thinking the same thing Kathy in Buffalo said. I thought maybe the asterisk by “ablutions” was going to mean the definition followed. Clearly I am *not* one of the PG readers of which you speak. I will go look it up however so that next time I’ll be a prepared-PG-reader.

  12. Grammy Judy
    | Reply

    I can relate on the hair cream. I grabbed what I thought was a tube of tooth paste, it was not until days later that I realized (as I grabbed the same tube) it was not tooth paste but Cortozone 10 that I use for itching skin. I could not figure out why my mouth was so sore but thought I had eaten too much salsa.

  13. Mary
    | Reply

    We would go for ablutions, or indeed, to ablute. My son, when three, told us he was going for a “blute”. It still creases me up.

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