mmmm….tasty face crayons.

I like crayons.

Growing up, my sisters, brother and I would color. It was a creative endeavor, which I suppose was encouraged back in the day, and it allowed Mom and Dad to watch LA Law in peace. We had a coffee can of broken crayons, scrap paper and a collection of coloring books. It was fun. Do you remember the Sesame Street crayon-making segment? It was my favorite:

I remember once coloring a whole bunch of pages, ripping them out of the coloring book, and walking door-to-door in the subdivision selling my creations under the stipulation that all money collected was going to be put in the poor box at St. Leonard that Sunday before Mass. I’ll never forget the look Mrs. H. gave me when I displayed my fine works of art and asked her for money. “It’s to help The Poor!” I said proudly, as I imagined dumping hoards of money into The Poor Box at St. Leonard. I am sure she was taken aback because she was in awe of my creations and the fact that I (and she, by buying my art) was helping The Poor! That, and I was 17 at the time. She certainly put my Picasso on the fridge or framed it and hung it on her wall or even decorated the inside of her garbage can, but it didn’t matter to me because I was helping The Poor, dammit!

OK, I was 6 or 7 when I had my Coloring for the Poor™ Campaign. These are my crayons today.

I colored when I was in college, and I still color today when I am stressed or need a break, or when I want to give someone a “gift from the heart” and I am too cheap to buy anything.

See, I made this:

A picture of my lab mates. I am the geek on the right. I drew and colored one of these for the girl on the left, who departed UIC last year. Thoughtful, huh?

And I made this:

It's a fabulous rainbow unicorn trout. His name his Charlie.

Because I love crayons and am an awesome colorer, I think it’s only natural that I like lipstick. See, lipstick is a crayon for your face. Now, I’m not Katy Perry or Lady Gaga or the stranger on the bus who can get away with blue or chartreuse lipstick, but a nice pink or orange flatters my face nicely. Currently, my favorite lipstick is Maybelline Coral Lustre. It’s just oh-so pretty, and it tastes like oranges, which is my favorite fruit next to watermelon.

A few of my face crayons, next to real crayons. The one on the left tastes delicious!

This morning, during the WGN Morning Business Report, I was shocked (shocked!) to discover that there was lead in lipstick. First, why would this be on the WGN Business Report? And second, why are they putting lead in my face crayons?

Time Healthland reports that the FDA found 400 lipsticks contain trace amounts of lead–which, you may recall from high school science class, or snacking on paint chips as a kid, or buying a house or filling up your 1977 Honda Accord–is a neurotoxin and can cause brain damage, renal impairment and lower IQ. What does this mean? Well, the CDC says the only acceptable amount of lead in a person is no lead at all, and this is especially true for children under six and pregnant women. So, while it’s probably overkill to ditch the L’Oreal Colour Riche in Volcanic, if you are pregnant, you may want to switch to a lead-free variety. And if you are a pageant mom, you may want to…well, I’m guessing you think that the awesome trophy your daughter may get for her rendition of “I Will Always Love You” trumps any risk of lowering her IQ or her ability to pee later in life from leaded lipstick, so nevermind.

Mommy says paint chips help me maintain my toddlerish figure!

In the scheme of things, I guess this is still better than the radioactive dinner plates that people were eating off of until the US needed the uranium to make atomic bombs. As for me, I’m going to stick with my awesome orange lipstick, at least until it runs out or I eat the entire stick because I’m starving and because it tastes good, whatever comes first.


About erika

nurse, certified nurse-midwifery student, public health fan, math & science geek, single malt scotch aficionado, klutz, goofball, scribbler, funny face & lover of all things nerdy.
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