September 21, 2008

The Magic of Pine Tar

My dad's side of the family is full of rednecks. A friend of the family always called me hillbilly, which used to really get under my skin. When I was a kid I was mostly unaware of how much the family truly was redneck.

I thought that most kids I knew were able to walk and milk goats on a regular basis, helped their grandparents butcher chickens, and ran around the farm barefoot whenever possible.

And using pine tar is just another example of my family's strangeness. We use pine tar for pretty much any wound.

When I was still very skeptical, I asked my doctor if she had ever heard of pine tar, or if she would recommend using it. She looked at me like I was crazy. She had in fact never heard of it, but said that if it seemed to work it would probably be fine to use.

I have since used it on many occasions, most often when I have burned myself, which happens frequently- especially now that I am a cook again. And you may be victim to hearing one of my pitches of why it is so great.

Yesterday I burned myself in two different places on my arms when I was working. We were extremely busy and I have been increasingly clumsy, which is a scary combination. I touched the warming element on the heating window at work, which left two nice burns on my right arm. And at some point I burned my left arm, probably grease or something.

Not wanting scars, I put a generous amount of pine tar on each burn and wrapped it up for the night. This morning in the shower as I washed away the residue of pine tar I noticed my burns were gone. The one on my left arm is slightly visible, but the burns on my right arm are completely gone.

So while it is a nasty smelly substance that is incredibly sticky, hence "tar", it works. I am not sure why it works, but it does. It is great at preventing infection and scarring. Tony thinks it is disgusting, but acknowledges that it does indeed work.


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