Embarrassment in a Tinted Tube

My son played baseball from the time he was five years old right through every league and into college.  We often traveled long distances for his games and would sit outside in the wind and rain, heat and sun, or cold blustery nights.  My lips often chapped and I developed a habit of keeping chapstick in every vehicle and seat pocket to moisturize not only my lips, but the dry cracked skin around them.

You know how that is.

And once upon a time, lipbalm that came in a tube was totally colorless.  I found out about the tinted ones a little too late.

You see, my friends and family knew that I had an affinity for the stuff and generously supplied me with a variety one year at Christmas.  I added them to my stash in our well-travelled Tahoe.

Late one night after a particularly windy and cold early spring game, I retrieved a tube from the glove compartment and smeared it all over and around my sore lips.  I didn’t bother to look, not knowing that I needed to and since it was dark, my husband noticed nothing.

Then we reached an intersection near our home and encountered a random vehicle check by State Patrol.  While my husband looked through his wallet for his license, I smiled at the officer as he shone his light into the vehicle and assured him I would get the registration.

As I flipped through the documents I noticed he kept the flashlight on me instead of my husband – the driver.  He had an odd expression on his face and asked if we lived near there and if we were alright – again focusing on me.

Of course I continued to smile and answer politely, handing over the registration.  The look he gave me was one of near shock, although he finally addressed my husband and after checking the addresses, waved us through.

It wasn’t until I started down the hall and caught my reflection in the mirror – insert shrill scream here – that I realized why he was so stricken by my appearance.  And as my husband followed me into the lighted hallway – insert another scream here – he thought I had bloodied my nose or bitten my lip.

curtesy of Pinterest
picture courtesy of Pinterest

I ran back to the vehicle and rubbed the raspberry tinted chapstick over my hand and realized what I had done.  Then we laughed like hyenas and I still do every single time I think of this.

A friend did something similar today and as I retold this to her, we both howled with the kind of belly laughing that brings tears to your eyes and makes your lips curl up in the ‘ugly’ laugh.  Once we recovered, she told me that I had to write about this.

Has anything like this happened to you?

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  1. Does coming out of the Ladies Room with your dress tucked up in your underwear count? In that case, it happens regularly …

  2. You had me worried there for a moment, Renee. I imagined the unimaginable on your lips.

    One of the closest I have ever come to your experience was when I went to the eye clinic for a minor intervention. They put some drops into my eyes and told me not to drive for a couple of hours. So I walked back home, stopping at our supermarket to do some food shopping. In Aisle 23 I began to wonder if I had a black nose or something the way everyone was looking at me. Only when I got home and looked in the mirror did I realize that the eyedrops had dyed not only my eyes ORANGE (bright orange at that) but the skin underneath my lower eyelashes too, trickling down my face. It was hilarious. That day Zandra Rhodes and Vivienne Westwood had nothing on me. I looked outrageous.

    And then, of course, there was that incident of the haemorrhage (again in a supermarket) but I believe I have related that ghastly story before. And that wasn’t funny. I hadn’t noticed it was happening. And it must have been a good five minutes before someone told me I was bleeding like a pig.

    Your story and mine prove two things: Never fish for anything in the dark and try and avoid supermarkets.


  3. Funny story! My mom told me this story – not really embarrassing, but funny: years before I was born, my sister awoke during the night with a toothache. There was some “remedy” for it in the medicine cabinet, but my mom didn’t turn on the light – just reached in for the bottle and rubbed it on my sister’s jaw. The next morning, they couldn’t believe what they saw: my mom had grabbed a bottle of shoe polish!!
    I can see why you would laugh every time you think of your encounter with the police officer!

  4. I was in Oxford taking a class and I visited the Botanical gardens. I smelled the various flowers for their scents. Then I went to a cafe and saw people staring at me in a funny way. I thought little of it until I caught my reflection in the ladies room later after the coffee sent me in there. I had yellow pollen all over my nose, making me look like a weirdo clown. I’m lucky no bees landed there to extract the pollen. lolol

  5. Oh man, the look on that officer’s face must have been priceless!

    I remember a time that we had some executives in town & they wanted to see our (then) building, which was for sale. I was asked to lead the tour; it was a Friday (casual) so I was wearing a button down cotton top, jeans and boots. I’m a rather busty gal and I didn’t realize that the top button, just below the collar bone, had come undone giving them an eyeful. (not wide open, thank goodness, but enough to keep ’em interested in following along …). I couldn’t believe how riveting they found my commentary …. Found out shortly thereafter why and, to this day, I am still embarrassed!

    Fun post 🙂

    1. You must have had their full attention! At least they didn’t think you were Bette Davis from ‘Whatever happened to Baby Jane’. That’s all I could think of – the loony old lady with the smeared lipstick.

  6. Oh no! Good for you for writing about it. Yes, that raspberry colored and flavored stuff cannot be smeared all over the place. I wrote about sitting with a total stranger for breakfast as I helped myself to his spoon, etc. and all the while my family (not far away) laughing at me as I hadn’t bothered to notice, I was not sitting with them. Sheeesh!

    1. That is too funny Georgette. Were you preoccupied or just so interested in the food and the newspaper that you didn’t notice? I’ve got to find that post and read about your breakfast ordeal.

  7. As a travel baseball parent, I can relate to the overuse of lip balm, and I suppose I should be thankful I never had the variety that contained pigment or color! I didn’t like the flavored varieties either, but when you’re desperate and run out to a convenience store between games, you can’t be so choosy. I laughed imagining what you must have looked like, and have to wonder if the officer thought you and your hubby went parking somewhere… 😀

    1. …or that I was an escaped mental patient, or high on … whatever would cause such a thing. Thank you for validating the baseball caused necessity for lip balm. Only another parent surviving the elements can truly understand.

  8. Uh oh! Life’s little moments can be fun, can’t they?! Oh well, no harm done! When I have an experience like this (although I can’t say I’ve ever had quite the same as yours) I just remind myself that all human beings have their moments of embarrassment. If you can look back and laugh rather than wanting to crawl under the bed, it wasn’t so bad, and hey, you gave the patrolman a great story too! ~ Sheila

    1. There’s probably a file somewhere with my description and vehicle tag number just in case a report for a crazy woman came through the department. Yikes! I can laugh about it now.

  9. Oh that’s hilarious. I’ve never had anything quite like that happen. I guess the worst thing I can remember is many years ago when I was just starting out as a letter carrier. I was subbing on a route I didn’t know that had a ton of mail volume which took me forever to get sorted and ready to go. Consequently, I was the only carrier still in the building when my boss came through leading a gaggle of little first graders for a tour of the Post Office. They were all gathered around watching me load my heavy trays of mail on a cart to take out to the mail truck. With my ass pointed their direction, I bent over to lift a very heavy tray and heard an ominous R-i-p…and felt an immediate gust of air filter up my crack! At least 6 inches of seam let go that morning.

    1. Oh no. At least that happened a long time ago. And if that is the worst, you have gotten off lucky. I could write a book about my embarrassing moments but they all seem funny now. But I do have to ask – did the kids notice?

      1. Well…I didn’t hear any titters, from them or from my boss. But that could have been because my ears were ringing from my own embarrassment!

  10. Renee, this post was a hoot! I can imagine the officer’s face, yours and that of your husband! Oh my goodness! Hooray for moments like these that provide a good, calorie burning belly laugh! hee hee! 🙂

  11. Oh yes, my life is like this on a regular basis. One big embarrassment after another.

  12. Oh, Renee! That is hysterical! I was hooting and hollerin’ along with you as I read this. That photo is perfect, btw. Racoon eyes. That’s happened to me. I forget I’m wearing mascara and late afternoon while still at work, I’ll rub my eyes because I’m tired and go around with raccoon eyes. Then, when I go to the bathroom and look in the mirror I’m aghast. Why didn’t anyone tell me??

    1. The worst part is that when you don’t know, you are walking around like it is perfectly normal with a straight face and the people around you are wondering if it is a new look or a mistake. Funny story Monica.

  13. Renee you should have kept a photo of that officer while he was trying to convince himself that you were all right. 🙂 I could only imagine that priceless expression on his face.

    1. I wish I did have one. The thing is, I didn’t know there was anything wrong with me at the moment he was looking at me like I had completely lost my mind. LOL.

  14. Your story made me laugh, but when I came to the photo, I spit my coffee all over my computer screen. Yes, I’ve done many things like that in my life, not the least of which is kicking my used mini-pad under the shelving at the grocery store when it popped out of my my bikini underwear and landed in the aisle.

    1. That is superb reflexes to be sure. I’m still bummed out about not being able to leave comments at your site. I’m going to try to unfollow and then follow back and see if it fixes itself.

  15. LOL. I had a good laugh when I read this. I had a similar experience with mascara that had gone all thick and gluggy and made my eyelids full and clumpy and stuck together. I put the mascara on in the car not realising what it was doing and after a few minutes looked like I’d been out for a night on the town at 9AM. Panda eyes were the go. Glad I discovered it before my first meeting. Haha.

  16. NOOO! that is too funny! How brilliant.. the only thing like that I can think of is when my sister put on her make up in a hurry and went out to work with beautifully outlined GREEN eyebrows! no-one said a thing! wrong pencil.. this was a great story! c

      1. She is not a mirror checker so it took her a number of hours really.. needless to say we have never let her forget it! c

  17. That is one funny event although I would say, also embarrassing if we are the one involve. Times like this humor makes all the difference. Me, I had left the house once or twice without knowing my shirt is inverted…oh worse, I attended my son’s preK graduation to realize later my scrub pants was inverted as well. Kind of look the same from afar…up until the back tag showed. Oops!

  18. A belly laugh – how great is a damned good belly laugh 🙂

    I love the pic, it’s interesting. Re coloured lip balm though, I like orange & fluorescent ones. They’re just wild.

    Anyway, trust your son to pull you up!

  19. Oh brava, I don’t remember the last time I had such a good laugh. I didn’t know you could get colored lip gloss. Good to be warned! (I also loved all the stories your readers shared.)

    Thank you for coming over to my blog Renee. I don’t know why I didn’t pop in before because I’ve seen your gravatar at several blogs I follow, and I see so many other familiar gravatars here that I feel at home (although I have yet to visit their blogs). There are millions of blogs but we all keep to a small circle, I guess.

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