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Originally published Sunday, October 21, 2012 at 5:30 AM

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Sunscreen catches fire, in all the wrong ways

The Wrap by Ron Judd

Seattle Times staff columnist

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Interesting to note that after three debates by candidates for the nation's highest... MORE
"The ever-growing, insidious influence, at every level, of private money on public... MORE
Love the Armstrong-Nike comment. Lance did some great work for cancer, but his lying... MORE


Man, you people complain a lot.

One public-spirited global company, "Energizer Holdings," is out there on the front lines, trying to protect earthlings from the heinous effects of sunlight, and what do people do?

Whine. About spurious issues such as an extremely limited number of cases in which sunscreen products made by the manufacturer of Banana Boat products have caused people's skin to burst into flames.

The company has been forced to pull 23 varieties of its UltraMist — also called UltraMist UltraDefense, UltraMist Sport, UltraMist Kids, and now, presumably, UltraMist Sear, UltraMist Char and UltraMist SkinGraft — from the market because of possible human shish-kabobbing.

Five cases of burns have been reported in the past year — all by people who failed to read the clear warning about keeping the sunscreen away from "sources of ignition."

On the plus side: The company can still shift gears and develop an SPF 45 Duraflame Log.

More flash polling:

Not Debate-able: Quick note here to the company expense-account manager: Of course the numbers add up! Mr. Wrap is someone who has shopped at various businesses for 25 years.

Inquiring Minds Still Want to Know: Mitt Romney's Lady Binder: D-ring, or round?

And Now, Many, Many Words From Our Sponsors: Interesting to note that after three debates by candidates for the nation's highest offices, not a single question has been asked about the one thing that frankly renders 99 percent of the other discussion fodder moot: The ever-growing, insidious influence, at every level, of private money on public policy.

Oo-ooh that Smell: A woman got kicked off a Metro bus by the driver because of a rank odor emanating from her child's diaper. We can't really condone that. Then again, we weren't trapped next to the kid in a sealed, airless sarcophagus.

Hot Air Mail: North Korea says it will open fire on South Korea if activists there go through with plans to float balloons across the demilitarized zone and dump hundreds of thousands of leaflets all over the northern nation. It's the first time since the establishment of North Korea that anyone else in the world could sort of see where they were coming from.

Speaking of Which: If they do, we only hope the people who dump those worthless yellow pages all over local streets and driveways twice a year are paying attention.

Just Did Him: Two thoughts about Nike, the sports-world's great Satan, finally dumping vengeful dope fiend and pathological liar Lance Armstrong, then taking his name off a campus building: 1) When even Beelzebub pushes you to the curb, it's highly probable that you're not a good person. And 2) Does Nike have any buildings left on its campus with names still on them?

Just a Suggestion: How about a new Phil Knight / Lance Armstrong Center for Situational Sports Ethics?

And Finally: With all the political ads swirling and potentially life-changing decisions to be made, it's more important than ever to focus on what is really the most important to us. Like getting Ivar Haglund's name on a new Washington state ferry. Do the right thing, State Transportation Commission!

Ron Judd's column appears each Sunday. Reach him at

or 206-464-8280.

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About The Wrap / Ron Judd

"The Wrap" appears on Sundays, highlighting the absurd and providing the punch line to the week's news headlines.


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