Heather Gay Weighs In on the “Thumbs Up” Exchange with Lisa Barlow: “Just Don’t Play”

What started as a disagreement over how long the RHOSLC cast members have known each other turned into a lesson in emoji usage. 

Lisa Barlow Says "Thumbs Up, F- You" to Heather Gay
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Lisa Barlow Says "Thumbs Up, F- You" to Heather Gay

Old college rumors and a "thumbs up" text have these Salt Lake City 'wives at each other's throats.

Since we first met The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City in the series premiere, cast members Heather Gay and Lisa Barlow have not been able to agree on how long they’ve actually known each other. 

While Heather maintains the women have “known each other for 20 years” after attending Brigham Young University together, Lisa told Jen Shah that she doesn’t remember Heather from their college days, but heard “Heather was like the good time girl.” The misunderstanding continued on the November 18 episode, when the women had a disagreement over the comments, as well as a message Heather had recently sent Lisa. 

At a dinner the women attended together after skiing, which you can check out in the clip above, Heather asked Lisa to address what she had said. 

“You don’t remember me or know me at all but you remember me flashing?” Heather asked. “You can not sit there and say you come out with love and kindness.”

“I have never done anything mean to you, and until you figure out what it is I trigger in you, we can’t have a good solid conversation and move forward,” replied Lisa, adding, “Thumbs up, f--k you.” 

While it may have seemed as though that thumbs up escalated quickly, it was in reference to a text Heather had sent Lisa, which included a thumbs up emoji that Lisa had interpreted as a “f--k you.” At the dinner, Heather explained, “It’s a thumbs up text, it’s an emoji,” but she had a different take on message during an interview. When a producer asked if it truly was “a f—k you,” Heather replied, “Absolutely.” 

Heather later admitted that she regretted the way she handled Lisa’s reaction to the text. “I regret it. Because the blowback has been so intense,” she explained on Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen. “She denied knowing me because I sent a thumbs up. What I was really saying was like, ‘Bitch, I’m reading the room, I know what you’ve been saying. Just don’t play.’ But I regret it. I wish I hadn’t done it.” 

In the clip, below, Heather also took the opportunity to reiterate, “I’ve known Lisa Barlow for 20 years. And she’s not my memory keeper, so I’m not lying.” 

On the November 12 episode of The Daily Dish podcast, Lisa said, “I was shocked that Heather had such strong feelings towards me. And I wouldn’t say I have drama with her, I think it’s the other way around. I didn’t know it was going to turn into something.” 

Want more RHOSLC? New episodes air every Wednesday at 10/9c or catch up on this season through the Bravo app.

After Show
After Show: Heather Gay’s Connection to the Osmonds
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