I was an almost guest on the Dr. Phil show and all I got was a lousy lead contaminated mug

dr phil ceramic mugI was an almost guest on the Dr. Phil show.

I was supposed to be a guest with Jessica Gottlieb on the Madlyn Primoff story, and how we thought it was ridiculous she was charged criminally for kicking her kids out of the car and forcing them to walk home. However, a prior segment went very long because of a surprise guest, so I never spoke.

I was an almost guest.

Ever since, I’ve been trying to figure how to post about being an almost guest. What is there to say – I went, but I didn’t speak? I got my hair done. I waited around. I hung out with Jessica, one of top 50 Nielsen power moms, and she is cool. Who would care?

Then I was putting away the bag of goodies I got – a pen, a journal, a heart shaped stress ball and a mug. I happened to turn over the mug. And what did I see? A Proposition 65 warning that the mug contains a chemical known to the State of California to cause cancer or other reproductive harm. So, I’m an almost guest and I get a mug with lead in it?

proposition 65 warningOf course,, I had to test the mug. Of course, what is the point of having a Niton XRF analyzer if you don’t test everything? So I tested the blue background first. If that had lead, I wasn’t going to be all that worried because then it would be bound up in the high fire glaze. The blue background tested non detect at less than 20 parts per million (ppm). Okay, so then I moved to the “Dr. Phil” logo, which appears to be a transfer or painted on. And, you would definitely handle it, although I don’t think that your mouth would get on it with normal sipping.

That Dr. Phil logo? It tested at 26,400 ppm lead.

Holy carp! I went to the Dr. Phil show and got a lousy lead contaminated mug.

Anyone want to make me a t-shirt? I can wear it at BlogHer

Realistically, would I be exposed to much? I really don’t know. Probably not until the logo started showing wear. But do I want to use it? Hmmm, no, I don’t think so. I’d rather use a food contact item without lead, thank you very much. (And, relating this to Madlyn Primoff, if I let my kids drink out of it, should I be charged with endangering the health of a child?)

I’ve been asked before whether a person should buy an item with a Proposition 65 label. Not familiar with Proposition 65? It is a California law that requires companies to provide warnings before exposing consumers to chemicals known to the state to cause cancer or birth defects or other reproductive harm. It has bad points and good points.

But for consumers, the question usually is whether they should buy products with Proposition 65 warnings. And the answer is, at least for me, I think it depends on the product. Food contact items? Probably not. Adhesives? Probably okay, although follow the directions (usually well ventilated area, etc.) for proper use.

A warning doesn’t mean that the product necessarily even has a listed chemical present at a level that would require a warning. Business can place warnings on consumer products if the company, based on its knowledge, or assumption, believes that a Proposition 65 listed chemical is present without evaluating the exposure. So, for example, companies place Proposition 65 warnings on vinyl items assuming lead may be present since it is used to stabilize vinyl without testing to find out if lead is present. So a Proposition 65 warning may not mean that a listed chemical is even present.

That being said, I still don’t want Proposition 65 warning labels on food contact items. So, Dr. Phil, perhaps you should re-think your guest gift items.

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