Milking Snails – aka dumb things teenagers do

Guest Blogger-Amy Andrews

Hi all! I’m Charly, Rebecca’s assistant. We thought it’d be fun to do a ‘Romance: The Good, the Bad, and the Disastrous’ theme with guest bloggers throughout the summer months. Every Monday and Thursday, we’ll have a guest blogger talk about fun stuff like horrible dates, good dates, etc. Some bloggers will have a contest, and some won’t – it’s totally up to them. If there is a contest, I’ll randomly draw a winner from the post comments, send the winner’s email address to the guest blogger, and they’ll take it from there. Rebecca will jump in and blog when she can. For now, enjoy as we play!

 

biopic2014I need to preface this piece by saying that I never thought I’d ever be writing a blog with milking and snails in the title. And I’m pretty much up for writing about anything. So far I’ve written blogs on such diverse topics as mighty wangs, ick words, hate mail, being a fat author, pirates (the Arrrrrrr kind not the illegal download kind) and pink fluffy handcuffs to name a few. But I knew the blog had to be about me – not my books – so had decided on blogging about lists. Making them and crossing them off. Which was going to lead to my obsession with post-it notes and pictures of my computer screen currently surrounded by a fringe of them.

All a little more relevant to my life than snail milking I can tell you! But then my seventeen year old daughter went and bought something dodgy off the internet which leads me to this topic. It’s not really related to anything about me or my life in particular, other than it being one of life’s grand WTF moments you have as a mother in which you wonder where you went wrong. So, I thought I’d share because maybe you guys might have had moments like this as well and when you’ve all finished headdesk’ing I was hoping you’d tell me what dumb things your teenager had done and then I wouldn’t feel so bad….

Sometimes that helps.

So….I found this vial (luckily not yet accessed) on my daughter’s desk a couple of nights ago. She wasn’t home at the time. Now, I’ve been a nurse for twenty-seven years (which makes this story even more what the hell was she thinking) so I know a vial when I see one. It contained a rather viscous looking clear fluid and had Chinese writing on it and was sitting next to the box from which it had obviously come, also covered in Chinese writing.

ME: What the?

Shows it to husband. It has two English words on – hyaluronic acid. Immediately Google hyaluronic acid. Thankfully not some new liquid form of Ice or other equally scary drug. Big sigh – daughter probably not a drug addict. Win for us.

Two hours later daughter comes home from late night shopping, laden with parcels for prom and happy as a clam.

ME: (holding up vial) Ahhh, what’s this?

HER: (no hesitation) Snail oil.

ME: (blinking) You mean snake oil, right?

HER: (crickets…)

ME: What the hell is snail oil?

snakeoilHER: It’s oil from snails. You rub it on your face. It’s supposed to be really good.

ME: (brains exploding trying to know where to even start) How do you know?

HER: The website has videos of clinics where they have snails crawling over people’s faces and how great it is for your skin.

ME: No. How do you know its snail oil? That it is what it says it is?

Especially when the vial and packaging are covered in a language none of us can read?

HER: looks at me perplexed like why on earth wouldn’t it be what it says it is….

ME: (wondering where I went wrong) Long, long rant followed about buying bogus crap of dodgy origins and even dodgier claims off the freaking internet from freaking China. A lecture about lack of regulations, controls, oversight blah, blah, blah. Horror stories about death and faces peeling off ensued.

Now, she’s used to horror stories from me. Trust, me as someone who worked in a PICU for twenty-one years, I have a horror story for every life situation and have regaled my kids with every one of them at every opportunity in my effort to keep them safe and aware of potential adverse health consequences should they not properly think through their actions. Such stories always inevitably ended up with them being in ICU. Usually they ran something like this – “if you play with matches you might drop it on the carpet and set the house alight and collapse from smoke inhalation and get third degree burns and end up in ICU for a long time where all your skin will need to be replaced and where you could possibly die and I’m much too young to be sad for the rest of my life.”

Drastic? Yes. It has, however, served me well over the years.

But let me tell you, I outdid myself with bogus Chinese snail slime horror stories!

The thing is though, she honestly hadn’t thought that it could be bogus. It hadn’t occurred to her to question the claims or the safety of buying something like this off the internet from god knew who. Or even to consult her mother, the nurse, who probably had some valuable insights into these sorts of things. And here I was thinking I’d raised my kids to always question things…

Like, for starters, let’s just pretend for a moment that it is actual snail slime in that vial. How do they extract the slime? Do they milk it somehow? Do snails have tiny udders I’ve never known about?

I’m thinking not…

I’m thinking the extraction process is slightly more brutal and not one too many snails would survive. And whilst snails are kinda gross little slimy creatures, I’m not sure they should be sacrificed so people can have another weird beauty ritual. This is a girl who is big on animal rights but that hadn’t occurred to her either.

So, there you have it. Dumb teenager thing #2436…..Please, please tell me I’m not alone.

ABOUT AMY:

Amy is an award-winning, best-selling Aussie author who has written over
fifty contemporary romances in both the traditional and digital markets. She
loves good books, fab food, great wine and frequent travel – preferably all
four together. She lives on acreage on the outskirts of Brisbane with a
gorgeous mountain view but secretly wishes it was the hillsides of Tuscany.
To keep up with her latest releases and giveaways sign up for her newsletter
http://www.amyandrews.com.au/newsletter.html

FAVORITE QUOTE:

somegirlsdomeme

LATEST RELEASE:

Some Girls Do

SOMEGIRLSDOcoverFashion student Lacey Weston is desperate to leave the city and go home to Jumbuck Springs. Her three older brothers are adamant she’s not. They made a death bed promise to their mother that Lacey would stay the distance at design school and Ethan, the oldest, takes this responsibility very seriously. But Lacey is deeply homesick and determined not to be dissuaded again. She’s also impulsive enough to try anything – even faking a pregnancy.

Ex-cop turned mechanic, Cooper Grainger – one of Ethan’s oldest friends -agrees to watch out for Lacey in the city even though he has a history with her he’d rather forget. How hard could it be, right? But a couple of years later, Coop is over pulling Lacey out of scrapes and cleaning up her messes
as she tries to outrun her grief and sense of dislocation. He takes her back
to Jumbuck Springs so she can persuade her brothers to let her come home.
But things don’t go according to plan. Before Coop knows it Lacey’s pregnant
and he’s putting his hand up as the fake baby daddy, filling in for the town
mechanic and moving in with her at the local pub.

Lacey is thrilled to have won a reprieve but nothing about the situation
sits well with Coop. Least of all having sweet little Lacey Weston as his
new roomie…

Amazon

GIVEAWAY:

Leave a comment for a chance to win a print copy of Amy’s USA Today bestselling Brazen – No More Mr Nice Guy and a retro romance cover inspired notebook. It’s open
internationally.

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116 Responses to Milking Snails – aka dumb things teenagers do

  1. Mary Preston says:

    I have snails eating my lettuce. I am obviously wasting an entrepreneurial opportunity. So gross!!

    I LOVED the quote thank you.

  2. Amy Andrews says:

    I know, right, Mary?
    Let me know how you get along with milking them

  3. Lisa says:

    LOL! The poor snails!

  4. Joan says:

    UGH!!!! My husband and I will be watching TV and I look over to the brick around our fireplace and see a snail climbing up the wall . It leaves a shining trail behind , guess that is the oil . I don’t believe I want that on my face . LOL Who knows …I may be missing out on a younger face or body !!!

  5. Donna says:

    It is stories like this that remind me of some of the reasons I did not have children!

  6. Juli says:

    Yuck, I hate snails, they creepy, slimy and just disgusting. But funny story 🙂

  7. Savannah Blaize says:

    I could not envisage a time where applying snail oil on my face would be a great idea. Good for you for spotting it and doing something about it early on. Love your books. Love this snippet. Keep doing what you are doing, please.

  8. Tania says:

    Snake oil – ha ha ha! Shame she didn’t get it because that was a good one.
    And by the way, Amy, I need someone to come and pick the snails and slugs out of my vege patch. If she gets the urge again, please send her over. 😉

  9. Lol, Amy! That was hysterical!
    I have 3 boys and do a similar version of ‘what if’ scenarios in the hopes of scaring them into making the right choices- possibly with less finesse and medical back-up than you considering I’m not a nurse 🙂
    But in a world where so many dangers are so readily accessible, with just the click of a mouse – the non-cheese eating kind – what else can we do?
    The thought kind of grosses me out. Snail oil?
    And snail udders? I love it!
    Thanks for sharing your story. You are so not alone!
    Michelle

  10. Jane Porter says:

    Oh Amy, I relate. My almost 17 year old is in that maddening place of:

    1) he knows everything

    2) he’s extremely cynical because he knows everything

    3) he’s not going to be anything like me, because he knows everything

    4) he’s just going to enjoy his life because he’s not going to be like me

    How did I raise a Rebel Without a Cause?

    Jane

  11. Lori H says:

    I have 6 children and the eldest is 22 and youngest 3. We’ve had all kinds of critters in our house over the years. My youngest is a boy and loves sneaking worms and ladybugs in his pockets 😉

  12. Susan Sands says:

    Amy, I don’t have enough space here to go through the dumb teenage ideas, decisions and things they do and have done in my years. I’m on my third now. My kids are 22, 18, and 16. 16 is a girl, God help me. Sometimes you just look at what’s been done and shake your head, look up at them and lose your words. There just aren’t any words as you open your mouth to ask. I see the light with the 22 year old. I dearly love them and they have wonderful brains, but there’s a teen substance swimming around in there that counteracts all rational thought at the oddest times. Hormones? Lack of development of their lobes? Who knows? Loved this post!

  13. Dani Collins says:

    Your ICU comment makes me think of my own standby, which has always been, “When you’re 25 and living on your own, you can do whatever you want.” This was my response when they wanted something like cake for breakfast, or a puppy.

    This summer, my daughter didn’t come home from uni. She moved in with her boyfriend. I was crushed. Her response? “Mom, I’m never going to be 25 and living on my own if you never let me live on my own.”

    I know, but…

  14. Tanya Gaunt says:

    Ewww it’s bad enough that people eat snails but to rub them or residue of them on your face that’s a big no no

  15. Rose Foster says:

    I would love this book

  16. Snail oil from China? That’s hysterical LOL. I gotta say though I’ve tried a bunch of beauty stuff when I should have known better. Haha.

    Awesome post!

    • Amy Andrews says:

      She’s obsessed with YouTube beauty videos, Carmen. I just never thought she’d take it this step further…
      poor kid, probably just rebelling against a mother who has no discernible beauty routine whatsoever

  17. Jennifer Schultheis says:

    My son is only 3, so I have no teenage stories to add at the moment. Snail oil..huh! Very interesting.

    Some Girls Do sounds very good. I love stories where the hero is a cop or mechanic so this works out great. Will check it. Thanks

    • Amy Andrews says:

      Don’t blink, Jennifer, he’ll be there before you know it!
      I hope you like Some Girls Do. I love cops and the whole man who’s good with his hands thing and Coop is the perfect combination of both

  18. 2kasmom says:

    Wow! Great books are a coming!

  19. Jane says:

    My “teenager” is well out of his teenage years these days thank goodness.

  20. Tami Schafer says:

    Thank you so for the chance

  21. Linda Romer says:

    I would love a copy of Mr. Nice Guy! Thank you
    Crazy kids! lol

  22. I am VERY glad to say that it is good to see that other parents have teens with… questionable… actions. Have you ever seen those t-shirts that say, “I’m not dumb – my mother had me tested” ?? I’ve contemplated MANY TIMES purchasing those for my Twinagers, because seriously? I’ve had them tested. They are off the charts, so needless to say, there are MANY, MANY EVENINGS that I’m sitting here, biting my tongue, trying to THINK before I speak, and eyeing the wine bottle. I’m firmly convinced that Xanax was developed by a woman with an IQ smart teenage son whose actions were equivalent to a box of rocks. My (internal) nickname for the Twinagers? THE IDIOT BRIGADE. The only saving grace? They’ve recently turned 16 and have decided they aren’t in a hurry to learn to drive. HALLE-EFFIN-LUJAH!! Tonight’s dinner consisted of this conversation…

    “[Kid we eat lunch with] is obsessed with dabs (?) right now.”
    “What’s that?”
    “A concentrated form of marijuana.” (Visual show of hands of “if marijuana is here, then dabs are up here”.)
    “Is this really appropriate conversation at dinner, in front of your 9 year old brother?”
    “Oh, yeah.”
    “Hey [twin brother] – did you hear about [girl name] getting called down to the office because she was offering to give head on the school bus?”
    –face palm–

    Maybe I’ll tell them to research milking snails.

  23. Lyn says:

    I know that I had some actions or behaviours that were questionable in my teens, but I’m not sure it was anywhere near the snail oil incident.
    NMMNG looks so good in print – even though I know the guts won’t have changed from the ebook.

  24. Kim M says:

    I would love to add these books to my book collection.

  25. Shelley says:

    My kids are still too young to give teenage angst, but I have plenty of nieces and nephews to give me ‘Duh?’ moments. Mot recently I was discussing upcoming renovations with one niece, detailing how we were removing a wall between the lounge and front entrance to open the space up, and Miss Duh? stood on the other side of the wall and asked me what I would put on it when the renovations were done – This being the wall that would no longer be there. Duh?

  26. Hey Amy

    So glad she hadn’t opened it yet…. eeeish. Lucky you still have an open door policy with her too – because the two of you are still so close – its awesome!

    Tell her snails are for eating, with lots of garlic – not smashing on her face….. icky….. or to be thrown in the canal out my place to feed the fish when I find them in my garden!

    Good luck with your kids! I know you will keep guiding them the right direction!

  27. AmandaS says:

    I would definitely not want to rub snail anything on my face,lol. My sister is actually the type of person who buys weird things on the internet, but she’s not a teenager, just hopeful. She believes in miracle cures. Thank you for the giveaway! 🙂

  28. You are SO not alone. Mine aren’t even in teenaged hood and I’m terrified of when that day finally rolls around. Mr four today “helped” daddy but getting all the tools (My Mr has every tool you can imagine) and then instructing Mr Two on how to use them before I caught them at it. Luckily the drop saw and other instant decapitation devices were too high for them to reach. I’m not a nurse, but I’m pretty sure I used the absolute certainty of them ending up in the ICU if they carried on that way in my “please dont do that again” instructions. And then again to My Mr when he realized just what they’d been up to!

    • Amy Andrews says:

      Oh yes, Michele! I have a Mr like that. I didn’t know until I saw pics of my 1 year old!! son with a hammer nailing a nail into his very own piece of wood just what those two got up to on the weekend while mummy was sleeping after night duty….

  29. Leah says:

    Really!! It may not be bogus!!!

  30. Jennifer says:

    Oh Amy, if that wasn’t so scary, it would be hilarious. I know, just when you think you have told you kids everything and they might have listened to at least some of it, they do something stupid.

    My daughter (and not that long ago) drank anti-bracteria soap thinking it might help her upset tummy. Quick call to the poisons hotline for me. She was fine, but really, drinking soap!!!

  31. Anthea Cuddihy says:

    Lolz. I love your comment about snake oil followed by *crickets*. Both particularly relevent in a story about other garden creepy crawlies. As a PS I think it’s hilarious that your teenaged daughter trusted the interwebs (in chinese). It’s pretty difficult to get teenagers to not be cynical about EVERYTHING, I think, so her attitude is very refreshing!

  32. Laura Boon says:

    My step-daughter once bunked school. Her dad knew exactly where to find her. She was cruising down the street and when she saw him, ducked behind a garbage bin, as if he wouldn’t see her! We only survived because a friend of ours, who teaches teenagers, kept reassuring us that they get their brains back and return to being normal people sometime between 18 and 21!

  33. Patty Blount says:

    My ribs cracked, I”m sure of it!

    You remind me of the time my son decided to “win” that free laptop just by clicking the email link on his computer.

    (I ended up having to bring that computer in for service to clear it of all the viruses.)

  34. Saskia says:

    No idea why I would want anything from snails near me, let alone on my face 😀

  35. Fiona Marsden says:

    With seven kids, all the things have just blurred. But I did something incredibly stupid once. When I was about 12 I decided to run away from home. From Cunnamulla, on my pushbike. The nearest town is a 2-3 hour drive in a car over (in those days) dirt roads. I left at going to school time, got about five miles out of town and turned around to go home with a splitting headache and got there at lunchtime.

  36. Robin Thomas says:

    Great story Amy – you gotta love ’em eh I remember when my daughter was that age she said despairingly, ‘mum I just can’t seem to have a relationship that lasts longer than two weeks!’ Now at the ripe old age of 23 she realises any relationship might just take a little longer!

  37. Yikes! Personally I steer very clear of anything slimy, so can’t help a sneaky admiration for your daughter’s enterprise. Along with a brain explosion on your behalf 🙂

  38. Robin Gianna says:

    I am laughing so hard at this, Amy – especially your children growing up with every imaginable horrible result from doing stupid things being pointed out on a regular basis because you’ve seen it for real. Maybe they’ll write their own books someday! 😉

    My 17 year old has informed me he’s “Street smart.” Really? I doubt that. Am wondering and worrying what the heck he even thinks that means. My kids have all done stupid things. The latest came from my 21 year old son who goes to college out of state. I probably shouldn’t even tell this, but a few weeks ago in the course of casual conversation he mentioned that he hadn’t been able to walk for three days because he hurt his leg. What?? Then he admitted he fell out of a tree. Then admitted he was drunk at the time. So, yes, climbing a tree while drunk – great idea! But he was absolutely sure it wasn’t broken, and gave me all the reasons why, none of which included an X-ray, and never mind that his calf was swollen to twice its normal size. He initially refused to get one when I badgered him to, then a week later finally did. Then felt very smug and full of himself that it wasn’t broken, despite the fact that he still can barely walk on it. *sigh*

    • Amy Andrews says:

      I laughed so hard at your street smart teen, Robin 🙂 And your college boy. I do believe one of the many things I’ve warned the kids about is drunkeness and heights 😉

  39. I’m still trying to get my head round HOW they milk a snail? The cow way? Do they have those udder attachments in miniature that sucks and pumps the “milk”? Or do they do it the snake way and press the snail’s “fangs” through a muslin covered jar?
    Either way, it seems that snails might have some mystery appendages we don’t know about!

  40. AmalieB says:

    I’m thinking the snail-oil process? Involves salt.

    These stories are great birth control 🙂

    Don’t tell me the good bits of motherhood. I want to maintain my *Whew-dodged a bullet* mentality 🙂

  41. CharlotteH says:

    ROFL at the idea of snail udders!
    My boys are only just 2yrs and 4yrs respectively so I’ve got all the ‘fun’ of teenage years to come.
    I CAN tell you that DH – who was an RAF brat and lived on several Army bases – has a plethora of horror stories re his teenage years with which to frighten the bejeesus out of me. Not least the time they were walking through the base with a bundle of fireworks when one of them thought it would be highly amusing to set a couple off near a kind of ‘builder’s yard’. When one of the fireworks landed in the grounds of a rather important MOD building and a handful of burly Paras emerged, a two mile chase through woods apparently ensued! As fast and wiry as 15yr old boys, Paras are fitter, and the latter eventually caught up with the former, threw them all against a chain link fence and informed the lads – in no uncertain terms – that they’d been very naughty boys!
    I fear, therefore, that the odds of my boys getting through their teenage years unscathed do not look good! Whilst your daughter appears to have suffered only a very temporary lapse in, what sounds like, usual good judgement – does that help? 🙂

    • Amy Andrews says:

      It does, Charlotte 🙂 My hubby has similar dumb teenage stories and how he got into his 20’s without third degree burns to most of his body I have no idea!

      PS – well done again on being a newly minted published author. So thrilled for you!

  42. Annie O'Neil says:

    HOLY COW! I love it. Hilarious. It reminds me of the time my friend told me she was going to start drinking her own wee as a youth elixir….uhhhhh…. It takes a village! Thanks for the story Amy – you had me clutching my gut!

    • Amy Andrews says:

      Okay well, that’s just gross, Annie. No amount of beauty is worth a shot glass of urine. The only time I’m doing that is if I’m lost out in the desert somewhere for days on end. And even then…..

  43. Hi Amy –
    It’s long since I’ve had a teenager in the house, and fortunately, I don’t remember any internet purchasing horror stories. (from them). Your story does remind me about a Seinfeld episode where George bought some cream from China to help grow his hair back, and it smelled so bad no one could stand to be around him.
    I love the irony of a teen who values animal rights thinking snail slime or whatever that liquid was would somehow be okay with the snail. (that it would survive).
    I can’t be judgy though, because recently something on the Internet caught my eye about a wonder treatment for aging skin (Lord knows I need help!) and I clicked on it. Thankfully, the video leading up to the actual product info was very annoying – a little hand drawing every picture in the “story”, then erasing itself and drawing the next picture while some narrator talked about it. Well I stuck with it until the point about finding some walnut that grows only in New Zealand or something and the oil it makes is what the magic thing is in. Then I realized this wonder-treatment would cost a lot because how much oil could one specific type of walnut grown only in Australia or New Zealand or wherever produce for all of us eager to look younger types around the world. I figured I’d have to fight for it with my pocket book and said, fuggidaboudit. So I can totally relate to your daughter getting pulled in by a promise for nice skin on the Internet. 😉

  44. Fiona says:

    You tell a fabulous story, Amy! Glad you found it before she’d used it.

  45. Amy Ruttan says:

    Totally grossed out about rubbing snail oil on your face. Aaaahhh!

    Though it does make me nervous about the impending teenage years. Oldest is a daughter (other two are boys) and she just turned 12 and the hormonal transformation is starting. I’m already starting to tear my hair out.

  46. That reminds me of a whole heap of beauty stuff I once bought in Korea. It’s sitting in the bathroom waiting for me to use it, but I can’t read Korean and just cannot remember what it’s for. I so seem to recall there is a hyaluronic acid face mask in there somewhere, hopefully minus snail oil.

  47. crystal yawn says:

    I have a ton of slugs, think their slime will fix all my face issues?? lol

  48. Tina Beckett says:

    I never thought I’d feel sorry for snails, Amy, but there you have it! Hilarious post!

  49. Susanne Bellamy says:

    Amy,
    That is one heck of a life lesson for both of you! It beats the heck out of a book I read last year called “The Sound of A Wild Snail Eating”!
    I’m still floored by the grossness of the whole ‘milking snails’; nothing I’ve got would top that!
    Cheers,
    Susanne

    • Amy Andrews says:

      So what does a wild snail sound like eating, Susanne? NOw I just *have* to know!

      • Susanne Bellamy says:

        I can’t recall that detail! The book was about a woman suffering a disease that kept her bed bound. Once, a keen gardener, she was given a terrarium with a snail that became important as her world shrank to just her bedroom. It was interesting for the trivia about snails which became her focus over months of enforced idleness.

  50. Susan wilson says:

    What I want to know is – had she actually used some on her face before you got to her with the horror stories…..

  51. Amy,
    Don’t our kids drive us crazy with the not thinking. I do want to know if the snail oil does wonders because I have some snails around my house that I might try milking!

  52. Lynn Brooks says:

    OMG … I would have been freaking out too! Glad she hadn’t used it yet and had it burn her face or something!

  53. Crystal Hernandez says:

    Loved reading this I feel like we would be the best of freinds lmao!

  54. Diana Tidlund says:

    Love Amy’s harlequin and mainstreams. Got seven sins and am having fun at the chat event

  55. Victoria Salcedo says:

    Awesome giveaway! Thanks for chance!

  56. Charly says:

    UPDATE: The giveaway winner is Susan Sands. CONGRATS! Your info has been sent to Amy.

  57. Excellent sense of humour.

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