lobster-1726627_1920We’ve all heard ‘red as a lobster’ when referring to a sunburned soul.

#4: Forgetting sunscreen.  

‘Have you seen this dark place on the side of your head?’ the dermatologist asked me. My answer was ‘ummm, well? it’s on the side of my head and my eyes are in the front of my head.

So…. no..I haven’t seen it.’

Continuing the insights on list of 37 things to do before we get old, #4  is to not forget sunscreen. Now, I haven’t forgotten it as I’ve aged. But as ayoung man, I’ve been sunburnt more times that I can remember. Once, I burned the inside of my youthful alabaster legs from the reflection of the sun off of the bottom of the shiny Buffalo river canoe. It was such a bad sunburn that I had to take off of work and could barely walk or wear bell bottoms for a few days.

So, back to my call to arms on my head spot. Before I knew it I was getting a phone call saying that the scraping had came back as a basal cell cancer and they’d scheduled me an appointment with a plastic surgeon to get it removed.

All of this ruckus because I had went to the dermatologist for a unexplained rash on my fingers, which she cured.

In the end they got all of the margins and I’m fine. But that’s for now. It was an eye opener to me that I, Mark Bedwell,

                                      I  can get cancer.

It just got real.

Summer fun and outside frolics are quickly approaching and skin cancer is extremely dangerous. I could go into the statistics, but really, who likes to read those? That’s like reading the calories on a menu. We know it’s bad and we should do better.

I remember seeing girls in the 60’s mix iodine with baby oil and lay out for a nice copper tan while listening to ‘Let The Sun Shine In’ and drinking a Coke in a bottle. It was truly one of those ‘seemed like the right thing to do at the time’ things.

My nog used to be covered by the ugliest mat of black hair you ever did see, and I never really saw a need to put on sunscreen because it was young and  I was superman.  But now that there is NO protection on the lid, I don’t go out without a proper topping of sunscreen in the summer. Or a huge hat. Or a do rag. Or a large cat if needed. Anything up there to keep the problems away.

So, let’s keep it short and to the point on this one and do what we’re told. Because if an older generation is telling us to do it, we should heed their scars and warnings of scars or death.

We are required to wear sunscreen or cover ourselves up. For Pete’s sake,  haven’t we all heard of global warming?!

After hearing the words ‘that is a cancer’ and going under the scapel, I know that I’ll do better about covering myself up now when exposed to the sun’s dangerous rays that summon me like a siren as the days get longer.

I’ll be ESPECIALLY sure to wear sunscreen when I complete that item on my bucket list of going to a nude beach. 

That’s the best I can tell about it.