Slip, Slop, Slap(per)!

December 14, 2016

How do you feel about Pete Evans? You know him – the Aussie chef  who is a world authority on everything and is on one of the 15 cooking shows on TV?

He recently brought back some very traumatic memories for me. (*Sidebar – my favourite TV chef was Peter Russell Clark – HE was excellent AND didn’t try to solve the world’s problems and tell you how to live your life – he just made yummy stuff WITH CHEESE).

A few months ago, Evans caused an uproar when he said sunscreen contained dangerous chemicals. While I do take his point that it’s important to know what you’re putting on your skin – or eating, for that matter – the media, and it’s fair to say a lot of people like the Cancer Council, thought this was a very irresponsible thing to say given his profile (in marketing speak he’s regarded as an ‘influencer’ uuurrrgghhhh).

So when I saw online yet another story about him/his Paleo life/his new wife/his new wife’s breast implants/his new wife’s breast implants paleo diet, it linked back to the article on sunscreen.

With my beach holiday approaching I thought I’d better get my moles checked. I know what you’re thinking Dear Reader. “Who knew Alex was so sensible? She hardly seems the type,” but it’s true. I’m very lucky to be blessed with my Father’s Greek heritage and only have to walk past a window to go a lovely olive colour, unlike my brother and two best friends who are Rangas and fry up like sausages on a hot barbeque when they’re in the sun. Poor freckly bastards.

Now I think about it, I have spent thousands of man hours applying sunscreen to my Ranga friends and relative. The last time I had my moles checked was a maybe two years ago. I made an appointment and then promptly forgot all about it. At the time, I had a ridiculously busy job which involved a lot of travel. At that time it was especially frantic at work so when I got the reminder text I thought “Oh OK – I’ll just swing past on my way home after work.”

I got to the clinic and the usual doctor wasn’t there. Instead, giving me what could easily be described as a world-class smile, was the very handsome, strapping, 30-ish Dr Hamish! “Ding Dong!” as Bridget Jones would say.

“Hello Miss Bernard, just come this way,” said Spunky Doctor.

“Oh call me Alex!” I said (laugh, smile, trying to be effortless fabulous).

Bit of chat about moles, changing moles, the colour of moles, how fascinating moles are and what a rewarding career it must be looking at moles…. Blah blah blah. “Just pop in there to get changed…”

I got into the cubicle, starting taking my dress off and I then…. “Oh JESUS! No! No!!” Remember I’d said I’d been travelling and very busy? I’m sure there are women reading this who have been in my situation – I was down to my really special/sexy underwear because I’d had no chance to do any loads of washing! To my abject horror I had on a black and crimson, lacy, frothy bra/bustier thingy and matching knickers. I nearly DIED. Best Little Whorehouse in Texas anyone?

Dr Hamish, bless him, undoubtedly trying not to go “Ppphhhwwwoooaaaaarrr!” or worse, laugh, remained relatively neutral – although I am quite sure I saw his eyebrows go up a bit – and I did what I always do in these all too frequent awkward situations I seem to find myself in. I just talked and talked and talked and talked…

I got all the all clear from Handsome Dr Hamish and set a new land speed record getting out the clinic. I couldn’t stop laughing/cringing all the way home and called my good friend Jane and told her the story.

“Geez AB! He was meant to be checking your MOLES – not if you ARE a mole!” laughed Jane at her own cleverness and my evaporating dignity. Why do these things always happen to me?

All jokes aside. Always be sun safe – we still have one of the highest rates of skin cancer in the world. Slip, Slop, Slap.

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Alexandria Bernard
With a successful 20+ year career in media and communications, Alex’s media portfolio includes contracts as a radio and television presenter (612 ABC, 4BC, Channel 9 and Network Ten) and as a feature writer for bmag and Brisbane Times.

Alex's voice and face may be familiar to you from her voiceover and television commercial work. She has been featured in national radio and TV advertising campaigns, corporate videos and has been a regular MC for major events.