Monday, February 15, 2021

She sprayed her hair with WHAT?

 

HALLIE EPHRON: As I was looking for upbeat news among the many hapless events that filled the news feeds last week, my attention snagged on a CNN headline: “Gorilla Glue Girl.” Irresistible! I clicked.

Apparently a young woman in Louisiana sprayed her hair with Gorilla Glue and it turned her hair into an impenetrable helmet. Shampooed it numerous times to no avail. Paid a visit to her local emergency room and they weren’t able to loosen its grip. She went (where else?) online with her plight and found a sympathetic audience, raising $13K in a GoFundMe campaign.

Oh the suspense! Finally, according to the New York Times, a Los Angeles plastic surgeon concocted a solvent that got the job done. 

Let’s not weigh in on how this could have happened (don’t we all keep our super adhesives alongside our hair products?) And to be fair, the online ads for Gorilla Glue describe it as a “spray adhesive” with the virtue of being “incredibly strong.” Isn’t that there very definition of hair spray? Nowhere does it say DO NOT SPRAY YOUR HEAD.

Before you pass judgment, how many friends do you have who picked up what they thought was their contact lens solution and it turned out to be… something else. Worst case: nail polish remover or the omnipresent alcohol wash.

I’m sure I’m not the only one that tried to answer my remote control when my cell phone rang.

Reminded me of the time I went out to the yard to cut some flowers and it wasn’t until I was standing over the phlox that I realized I’d picked up a wine bottle opener instead of a garden clipper.

Or, perhaps like one of the contestants on The Great British Baking Show, you inadvertently put a half-cup of salt into a recipe instead of a half-cup of sugar.

So I thought today we could be generous and commiserate with Gorilla Glue Girl, sharing our own less-than-ept moments.

JENN McKINLAY: There was that horrible day that I grabbed scented body oil instead of hairspray and managed to oil my head. It smelled great but I looked like a seagull rescued from the Exxon Valdez disaster.

I feel for Glue Girl, I do. In my defense they were both non aerosol pump bottles that looked exactly the same. When my eyebrows went rogue, I thought using the same razor I use on my legs would be less painful than tweezers. It was. However the shape they took after the razor, well, let’s just say I spent a month with a constant look of surprise on my face!

LUCY BURDETTE: These things do happen, but Gorilla Glue?? Anyway, I’ve done the opposite of Jenn--applied conditioner to hands and legs instead of hand cream. And used other tubes of ointments in the wrong places (won’t say more on that subject.)

But back to glue, in our pod like any good older sibling, T-Bone is known to knock things off the counter that Lottie puppy can’t get at. Then the dog runs off with them and shreds the item in question. A few weeks ago, we were missing the tube of Superglue. Yep, we found it in Lottie’s stash with bite marks all over it. Luckily she didn’t glue her mouth shut!

DEBORAH CROMBIE: Oh, yikes, Lucy! That would have been awful! It's always the things you don't expect, like the time Kayti's dog got into the jeweler's rouge in Rick's tools. Hint: jeweler's rouge is made from iron and is very poisonous when ingested!

I feel for glue girl, I really do. I mean, anyone could mix up two aerosol cans, right? But why was the super glue next to the hair spray? That's sort of like keeping toilet cleaner next to your olive oil and picking up the wrong one. (And no, haven't personally done that. Yet.) I have used hair conditioner instead of shampoo, and vice versa, picked up what I thought were kitchen scissor and wondered why I had the garden secateurs in my hand. I'm always reaching in the kitchen drawer for the can opener and pulling out the utility knife. But I can't possibly top Jenn's hairspray/body oil. Or the eyebrows. Ouch!

HANK PHILLIPPI RYAN: Well, how about the hideous baking powder/baking soda dilemma?

And I am still baffled about why the warning label on my hair dryer says “keep away from water.” I mean…

But I have almost used eyeliner as lipliner, and lipliner as eyeliner. Neither would have been successful. And certainly the “things in tubes” dilemma--toothpaste or face goo.

Yes, I have definitely answered my remote, and tried to turn off the tv with my phone.

And recently, I put the “white revive” stuff into the colored batch of the laundry. I gave it the old covid “whatever” response, and I have to say, it didn’t matter.

Gorilla Glue person was probably working on the copyedits of one book, trying to write another book, and trying to think of a pitch for her next one, and trying to keep up with Insta, Twitter and facebook, and figuring out what’s for dinner. Just a thought.

RHYS BOWEN: I can’t imagine anyone being clueless enough not to know what Gorilla Glue is. Having stuck a million objects together with Gorilla Glue and seen the ads on TV when the gorilla leaps out to save the day I know it’s for sticking things but not spraying hair.

However, I have been guilty of putting salt into my coffee in a fancy restaurant (how was I to know the silver dish contained salt, not sugar?) AND grabbing the wrong bottle in the hotel shower while I was on book tour and putting body lotion on my hair instead of conditioner. That also took a long time to remove. 

JULIA SPENCER-FLEMING: Honestly, I can commiserate with Gorilla Glue Girl because I think back to my teens and early twenties and recall the dumb things I put on my hair and skin deliberately. Like baby oil in the sun - boy, am I paying for that now. Or pouring lemon juice and hydrogen peroxide on my scalp to lighten my hair. Or in the eighties, when I was trying to get my 'do WAY up (you remember 80s hair...) and thought if a little mousse lifts it a little, then a lot of mousse... turns it into an impenetrable thicket of stiffened keratin and chemicals.

I don't even want to think about the "fun, do-it-yourself" fake nails that would NOT come off. I had to go to the local nail place, super embarrassed, of course, because I had obviously been trying to cheap out and do it myself, and paid $$$ to get them off. And my nails were a shredded mess for months afterwards!

So my sympathy's with you, Gorilla Glue Girl. It was bad enough with Cosmo Magazine's "Why Don't You Try" column; I can just imagine the mischief I would have gotten into if I had been able to read "Five Fun Beauty Hacks" on someone's Instagram back in the day.

HALLIE: So in the spirit that confession is good for the soul, it's time to share oopses.

77 comments:

  1. The Gorilla-Glue-in-the-hair story made us wince; we were glad to know that it ultimately had a happy ending.
    As for my own goofs, I’ve grabbed for the dry shampoo and gotten the hair spray instead . . . . not a disaster, but certainly annoying at the time!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I feel for her, too. Imagining that plastic surgeon's business is booming.

      Delete
  2. Okay, shampoo on legs instead of body lotion...don't ask. Shiny legs though! And, ofcorse the writing is so small on those little hotel toiletries, of course I put body lotion in my hair. Like Rhys, about 5 washings got it out with hair like straw for a day or two.

    I saw the article on Gorilla Glue hair girl and passed on reading about it. Hallie, it's so funny which stories pull us in!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. EXACTLY! That print on those little containers is way too small!

      Delete
  3. Only a few weeks ago, I mistook the tablespoon measure for the teaspoon one and cooked up a batch of VERY salty soup. I'm not sure our blood pressure has come back down to normal yet.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A misstep with salt is not something you can easily correct.

      Delete
    2. Isn't there a hack about potatoes? I think you peel them and put them in the soup or cut them in half and put them in the soup? They don't need to cook, they are supposed to absorb the excess salt. Don't know if it works - just thought I'd toss it out there. I just discovered that a teaspoon of baking soda will correct an overindulgence with vinegar. That worked for a barbecue sauce I made over the weekend.

      Delete
    3. But my chef friend helped me out of that before a dinner party and I added potatoes to the soup which corrected the problem very neatly. No one knew that the recipe did not call for potatoes but me.

      Delete
    4. The problem is it was potato soup! Already had six large ones in there!

      Delete
  4. Like others, I have mistaken salt for sugar, and used conditioner instead of shampoo. No big deal.

    But the worst hair disaster happened was when I was a teenager. I wanted to give my hair some body. I did not have a regular hairdresser and went to the local Supercuts and asked for a perm. Well, that perm solution turned my stick-straight hair into an AFRO! Boy, the look on the hairdresser's face said it all. And of course, I was stuck with that frizzy mop for months!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, the '70s! I also once got a permanent that turned into an Afro. Let's just say it was not the most flattering accidental cultural appropriation. And took forever to grow out, too.

      Delete
    2. Yes, and the remaining hair was damaged for years! I learned in my 30s that there is a special type of perm solution for Asian hair. My mom's hairdresser was Japanese and imported the stuff from Japan. Well, I finally tried that and it worked great. So I had nicely permed hair for about 5 years. Eventually, the hairdresser moved to Vancouver in 2005 and I have been cutting my own hair ever since, and no perms.

      Delete
    3. This is reminding me of my first perm. A home perm. The smell... lingered for months.

      Delete
    4. I used to give myself perms, Hallie. I had all the rods and papers, and gave my daughters perms, too. None of them saw the inside of a salon until high school.

      There was a way to get rid of the smell, but I can't remember what it is any more!

      Delete
    5. SO AWFUL! Ah. Yes, I do credit my mother with preventing me from getting a permanent. "All the girls were doing it" did not carry any weight with her, thank goodness.

      Delete
  5. Thanks for the laughs - and cringes! Once, about an hour before an online author gig, I worked body lotion into my hair instead of the styling stuff. I didn't have time to wash it out. I fluffed with the hair dryer as best I could and kept an extra distance from the camera. Those two bottles no longer sit side by side!

    One horrible time I put a drop of ear wax softener instead of eye drops into my eye. Very bad idea to put those babies in the same size tiny bottles. Never again.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Early one morning, half asleep, my husband grabbed what he thought was the toothpaste from the medicine cabinet. Nope! Bengay You can imagine the rest of the story.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is a famous story in my home, too... my dad did his own packing for a trip he and my mom took, only to discover he grabbed the bengay instead of the toothpaste and attempted to use it. Let your husband know he is not alone.

      Delete
  7. Bengay? I'm embarrassed to say I did the same thing but with the stuff you use for athlete's foot. Bleh. Caught it JUST in time.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Hysterical! I was so sorry for Gorilla Glue Girl. Glad to learn she has found a solution and has her own hair back!

    Besides answering the remote from time to time, my biggest goof was making brownies and reaching for the cayenne pepper instead of the cinnamon. Don't want to do that again.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. YIKES! That's a good one. And so sad to ruin an entire batch of brownies.

      Delete
    2. Kait, I have a recipe for “spicy” chocolate chip cookies that calls for a little cayenne pepper. They’re actually quite good!

      DebRo

      Delete
    3. Isn't that how new recipes are developed?

      Delete
    4. DebRo - sounds great, I like a bit of spice in my baking. I have a pumpkin pie recipe I'm dying to try that has habanero - I would tone that down by using a jalapeno instead, but it sounds yummy to me - hubs, not a fan so I haven't tried it.

      Delete
    5. Yes, indeed, Susan. It might have worked, too, in moderation.

      Delete
  9. What's the difference between "light golden brown" and "light auburn brown"? not much, right? I colored my hair with the latter and turned into Bozo the clown! I went in for my regular clip a week later, and after my haircutter laughed her sides out, she washed it with non-color protection shampoo with perfect results. Streaky light brown with auburn highlights.

    I now double and triple check all the Natural Instincts components before I slather it on my head.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I put liquid dish detergent in the dishwasher when I was first married 45 years ago. I mean, really, the stuff was for cleaning dishes, right?! Let's just say the whole kitchen got cleaned!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. HA HA HA! Wasn't there an I Love Lucy episode where she overfilled the washing machine with soap and suds flooded the apartment?

      Delete
    2. That SHOULD work. It totally should.

      Delete
  11. The Gorilla Glue packaging design is very close to that used by an actual hair product called Gorilla Snot (ew), and that is the basis of the mix-up, apparently. If you look it up online, you can see the resemblance. I can see how someone might, might think the glue was an aerosol version of the. uh, snot.

    All the usual, although I don't specifically remember any horrible incident. But last spring we filled our raised bed boxes with construction soil, because my husband insisted it was "good dirt". Filled with sand--which has no nutrients, my friends--and apparently, some herbicide, as well. Those beds were the worst I've ever had, in 50 years of gardening.

    Jenn, I almost choked to death on my coffee at your seagull comment!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Who in the world would ever put a product called "snot" on any part of their body? I can't even...

      And your poor new raised beds, Karen! That's a high crime and misdemeanor against a master gardener. What did you do? Or will do?

      Delete
    2. It's scary what's in most soil...

      Delete
    3. Edith, I've since added compost and straw to the soil, which I'm hoping will enrich it. The herbicide didn't really kill anything, just stunted the growth of some of the plants. It was so weird, I couldn't figure out why the radishes didn't germinate. They're always so reliable.

      Delete
  12. Ok, I'm going to tell my story. But if any of you ever mention this, like at Noir at the Bar, I'll say you made it up, except you cant make this stuff up.

    Many many years ago when I was far to young, I got married. The night before the wedding my mother had The Talk with me, and presented me with a tube of Preceptin contraceptive cream, along with applicator and directions for use. In addition I had an overnight bag packed with all the toiletries I might require.

    The wedding night arrived, and I reached -- in the dark -- into the overnight bag and pulled out a tube and an applicator, filled it up, and inserted it in the appropriate oriface. Then we commenced on what was to be a night of making legal love, having experimented with the illegal variety a few times before. Moments into the big legal experience, we both felt a terrible burning. With a choreographed scream and leap, we parted, one to each side of the bed. Lights on and a run for the bathroom -- did I mention my mother gave me a douche bag too? -- for a thorough cleaning off and out. Once the pain subsided, we both noted a minty fresh odor. And saw that the applicator was still connected to the tube of Stripe Toothpaste.

    Enough said.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh dear goddess.. chuckle.. and more gafaw.

      Delete
    2. I'm cracking up!! Mum's the word... but that is hilarious.

      Delete
    3. Sorry, laughing but shouldn't be laughing, Ann!

      Delete
    4. Oh, my - that is hysterical!

      Delete
    5. Totally hee-hawing here. Sorry. It's not funny. Snort!

      Delete
    6. I'm sorry the legal event was interrupted, Ann but thanks for the inappropriate laughter at the beginning of my day.

      Delete
    7. We’ve got you now, Ann. Next conference the drinks are on you or we blab!!!!!

      Delete
  13. Not nearly as funny but. I was out of soy sauce.. so why not substitute salt? and how much (shaka shaka salt container..) maybe not enough shaka some more. and . the Dead Sea was sweet by comparison.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wondering, did the other ingredients float in it?

      Delete
  14. I had just nursed my newborn in the wee hours of the morning and went to get a fresh diaper and came back with a CD instead. I remember it took about 30 seconds for me to realize that what I had done ~

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha ha!! Mommy brain - it's well documented.

      Delete
    2. Oh, those wee hours nursings! I'm sure I did something equally baffling!

      Delete
  15. I've done the "conditioner, not shampoo" thing. I think I've tried to use rubbing alcohol not nail polish remover. But usually my "oops" moments are the ones where I've completely forgotten something like the time I didn't add sugar to a pumpkin pie. My family made up for it by doubling-up on the whipped cream.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Other than the shampoo and conditioner bottles mix-up I don't recall anything like you guys are telling. But, while not the same thing, the topic reminded me of my former husband's pill mix-up. Every morning I put his pills in a tiny glass dish that was just for that purpose. It was left at his place on the table. At the other end of the table I put the dog's heartworm pill which I would give him when he came inside. Meanwhile I went out to hand up the laundry. My husband left for work as I came back in. I went to give the dog his pill and it was not there. You know what happened. I called the vet to see if the pill would have any side effect in humans; it would not. But they were very concerned that the dog didn't get her pill. Later, when I told my husband what had happened he failed to see the humor.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh dear, Judi! My F-I-L kept his hearing aid replacement batteries in a little travel pill container along with his blood pressure pills. One night when they were visiting here, he asked Irwin to look in the little box and tell him if he saw a battery in there.
      Nope. Irwin drove him to the ER just in case. That was an interesting night.

      Delete
  17. Just in time, I stopped myself from putting Trader Joe’s Everything But The Bagel seasoning in my oatmeal, instead of cinnamon. On other occasions, too many, I have used the wrong spice when cooking dinner. Sometimes I was able to salvage whatever it was I was making. There were a couple of times recently when I started out to make scrambled eggs and halfway through the process I realized I was making fried eggs. Not a problem, except that I was craving scrambled eggs!

    When I was still working, I tried to do a calculation on my phone instead of my calculator. They weren’t even on the same side of my desk. (It was a stressful job.)

    I’m in good company here!

    DebRo

    ReplyDelete
  18. And of course, it's a common trope in mysteries. Right?

    More than once, Agatha Christie killed someone (no, one of her characters did) by arranging to substitute Hat Paint for Cough Syrup on the bedside table. HAT PAINT!

    ReplyDelete
  19. Once I thought I grabbed a lip gloss stick roller and it turned out to be perfume stick roll on! Yikws! Sometimes lipstick smells like perfume. I did not know until I put it on and it tasted like perfume. I had to wash it off with lots of water during a time when we had severe drought!

    Since my hair is Allergic to Hair Spray, I never use it (since that discovery) though I have used hair mousse sometimes. I feel bad for the Gorilla Glue Girl that it happened.

    Diana

    Diana

    ReplyDelete
  20. There was the time in college I got to a house party early and saw a plate of delicious home-made brownies while helping my friend in his kitchen. I LOVE brownies and was starving, so I ate SEVERAL, only to be confronted by my horrified friend. You guessed it, they were pot brownies. I got so high I was hallucinating - if you saw Regina King's "Pot Gummies" sketch in last Saturday's SNL, it was pretty much like that.

    I didn't even like pot! I just wanted the chocolate!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Brings back memories of my wild youth! I love that story, Julia!

      Delete
    2. This is reminding me of the spiked watermelon I gobbled down at a UVA frat house... Fortunately the young man I was with did not take advantage. I don't think.

      Delete
    3. Julia, I did the same thing at a party in the 1970s. The party was at the home of a guy I had just met, and I didn't know anyone except him. It was actually a pretty boring event, but there was a plate of absolutely delicious brownies. Chocoholic that I am, and since I'd run six miles that day, I also at several. When I mentioned how good they were to another guest she said, "Oh, aren't those the pot brownies?" It had never occurred to me. nd I also got really high.

      The only thing that disguises the disgusting taste of pot is chocolate!

      Delete
    4. Dang. I went to the wrong parties.

      Delete
    5. Which brings up the timeless question regarding just how addicting is chocolate, anyway?

      Delete
  21. Using salt instead of sugar in a cake recipe, that would be one of my aunts. Boiling eggs in about an inch of water, that would be my sister. The top fall off the salt shaker, at the table, during Christmas dinner, that would be my brother but that wasn't his fault. Making yeasted rolls that didn't rise for extended family's Christmas dinner, that would be me but that would be failure of a recipe. It's like not grabbing/using the wrong bottle/ingredient. Beyond grabbing the conditioner instead of shampoo.....Lord, I'm boring.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Reminding me of the thanksgiving dinner when my now-ex-brother-in-law leaned back in the chair and it broke to pieces. He claimed my mother set him up, and it's entirely possible.

      Delete
  22. I remember the eighties hair! Probably the reason for the hole in the ozone layer. Ack!

    ReplyDelete
  23. Decided to fine-tune my eyebrows with sharp, pointy cuticle scissors. Slipped and poked my eyeball, which left me blinded. Emergency trip to the ophthalmologist. Thank goodness eyesight returned the next day. So scary. And stupid.

    ReplyDelete
  24. I can relate to the fake nails story. I used them one time and that was enough. I was a Mardi Gras Queen of a krewe and needed fake nails because my costume was that of a leopard, sort of. My hairdresser friend said to pick up the drug store brand. She helped me apply them, and after a big evening (it did pour down rain on our outdoor event so everyone had a drink or two to stay warm or huddle under the bar tent), my husband and I came home. I got the fingernail polish remover, but the nails wouldn't budge. My husband brought in the big can of acetone from the shop, and tried to retreat to bed. I made him stand there during the slow process of soaking my fingers for a long time and then prying the nails off, because--well, because I was the queen, darn it, and misery loves company. Besides, he can be quite funny and he kept me laughing at my dilemma.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Back in the olden times when you could eat at a buffet you had to be careful. Let's just say wasabi is not pistachio ice cream.

    ReplyDelete