The undeniable hold of 'Gorilla Glue Girl' and what it says about the empathy of the internet

(CNN)This week, the world was introduced to Tessica Brown, a young woman from Louisiana who made possibly the most unfortunate haircare mixup in history. Instead of using regular hairspray on her hair, she grabbed a can of Gorilla Glue spray adhesive and went to town.

The result was, well, exactly what you think would happen if you coated your head in industrial-strength glue.
Her hair became an impenetrable helmet, and as her social media videos about the incident racked up millions of views, people became obsessed with her predicament.
Do you roll your eyes at someone who's gotten themselves into such a situation? Do you feel bad?
Cynicism or empathy: It's a choice we often face as we observe an endless parade of online strangers whipping out their mistakes, poor decisions and unfortunate mishaps for all the world to see.

Reaction to her mistake was mixed

While there are plenty of laughs being had at Brown's expense, it seems like a good portion of people chiming in on the situation genuinely felt bad and wanted to help the poor woman. The comments sections of her videos became little brainstorming summits, with people trading all the adhesive solvent tips they could.
Even Chance the Rapper mentioned it, saying he was glad people were helping Brown and said it was hard to laugh at the video since she seemed to be in such distress.
The incident obviously inspired a lot of eye rolls, too. After all, people do all kinds of dangerous, bizarre things for a little bit of social media clout. Hazardous stunts of yore, like the cinnamon challenge in the early 2010s, even launched the careers of a few successful Youtubers, and the Tide Pod challenge still lingers online as a meme about the follies (and chemical poisonings) of youth. We wake up every morning in a world where super gluing your hair to your head is not the worst career choice you could make.
In the case of Gorilla Glue Girl, it's hard to know what to think. Brown knew she was using Gorilla Glue, but who among us hasn't had a similar experience and grabbed a can of something, thinking it was something else? If you've never left the house with a little bit of spray deodorant in your hair or slicked up your counters with PAM when you meant to reach for the Lysol, congratulations. You're just built different.
It's also worth noting some eagle-eyed TikTok users pointed out there is a line of haircare called "Moco de Gorila" which features a gorilla on the packaging, and Brown's preferred hairspray is called "Got 2b Glued." Coincidence? Maybe.
Then again, we DID survive a time when people were shoving entire spoonfuls of dry cinnamon in their mouths.
Tessica Brown visited a hospital to try to remove the glue.