Why on Earth are Band-Aids® so amazing?!
We have a strict No Blood, No Band-Aid® rule around here and that has resulted in many tears. Our children have been known to ask for a bandage for a bug bite, hang nail, invisible scratch, and an itch. Band-Aids® make it all better. At this point it’s just a matter of time before one of the kiddos will purposefully injure themselves just to get an adhesive stick-em.
I’ve been known to use nicely decorated, latex-free plastic strips as bargaining chips. I’m not above bribery and I’m not ashamed to admit it.
Still, the enchantment of these little boogers eludes me. I don’t know why they spend so many waking minutes wondering when, if, and how they can negotiate for a Band-Aid®. The function of this medical tool is obvious and wonderful… but why the absolute fascination with an object they only wear from 4.3 minutes on a good day?
I can’t be the only one with questions about the Band-Aid®, so it’s time for a 10-Spot Ramble so we can learn some trivia about the plastic adhesive strip:
1. The Band-Aid is a gift of love. Earle Dickson, an employee of Johnson and Johnson developed the Band-Aid® in 1920 for his accident-prone wife, Josephine.
2. Early adhesive bandages required crafting skills. When they hit the market in 1920, Band-Aids® were handmade and came in strips that were two and a half inches wide and eighteen inches long. The person would cut the bandage to the specifications they needed. I would not have done well with this test.
3. Band-Aids® and Boy Scouts go hand-in-hand. Johnson & Johnson decided their main clients were families, mainly mothers, so they distributed free Band-Aids® to the people they felt would need them the most – Boy Scouts. After giving away an unlimited number to Boy Scout troops across the U.S., Band-Aid® sales began to increase. Mothers across the continent rejoiced that their sweet man-cubs would be bandaged with sterile strips.
4. Remember the red string? Today’s bandages are opened with a pull apart, but the Band-Aids® of my childhood had a red string. Do you remember it? That red string that used to open the wrappers first appeared on the box in 1924.
5. Barry Manilow was actually referring to Band-Aids® in “Let’s Get It On.” Nope. Fooled you! That’s a lie, but Manilow did compose the famous Band-Aid® jingle (“I am stuck on Band-Aid® brand, ‘cause Band-Aid’s® stick on me!”).
6. Jersey isn’t famous just for its Shore. The Band-Aid® manufacturing plant is in North Brunswick, New Jersey.
7. Band-Aids® glow when pulled apart. Really. Go try it yourself. It’s due to a process called triboluminescence. Triboluminescence is what occurs when a Wint-O-Green Life Saver candy is crushed in the dark, letting off a little glowing spark. When a high enough difference between negative and positive charges is formed, electrons jump across fractures in the candy, reacting with nitrogen, producing a glow. A similar thing happens with Band-Aid® wrappers and postal envelopes. When separating certain sticky surfaces, a similar reaction to that in the Life Savers occurs, causing a light blue flash.
8. We’ve gone through a lot of Band-Aids®. Johnson & Johnson reports over 1 billion Band-Aids® have been sold. That’s a lot of Band-Aids®. In fact, I think it may actually be rivaling the number of McDonald’s hamburgers sold!
9. Band-Aids® and Listerine are kissing cousins. Well, not really. But if they were they’d have fresh breath because it was Sir Joseph Lister, one of the first proven germophobes, who advocated for sterile everything from kissers to bandages. Listerine came from his desire to kill the germs and Band-Aids® came from the idea of sterile gauze bandages. Pretty nifty, huh?
10. A used Band-Aid® is one of the most disgusting items on the planet. It am 100% grossed out by dirty Band-Aids® but it really doesn’t matter if the gauze is nasty or clean – if you get a Band-Aid® stuck to your barefoot you know you’ll be doing the hokey-pokey at a fast pace and practicing contortionist’s moves until you get it unstuck from your foot! Bleh. Gross, gross, gross.
Finally, I came across this little saying as I was researching this post:
“Excuse me, do you have a Band-Aid®? Because I scraped my knee when I fell in love with you!”
Heh, heh, heh.
How much love do plastic adhesive bandages get in your house?