It’s All Fun and Games till Somebody Loses an Eye

John Wayne“It’s All Fun and Games till Somebody Loses an Eye!”
I heard that warning so many times when I was a kid I could have sung it back to my parents before they’d finished, if I’d had a death wish. All I had to do was run with a glass, toss the scissors, or jump out of a tree on a kid to get them started. I was a smart, tough kid. I KNEW I wasn’t going to get hurt. I had the power of ten because my heart was pure. Well, maybe not pure, but I was sure I had the power of ten.
At any rate, only one time did I ever know of a kid to lose an eye from horseplay, and that circumstance couldn’t have been anticipated. Thankfully, I wasn’t involved. One of the neighbors had a large peanut patch. For those of you who don’t know, peanuts grow underground and have to be dug up. Mr. Jones had already harvested his peanuts and a group of neighborhood kids played in the field, an entirely harmless pastime. Had there been a crop left, it would have been a heinous crime, but the parents were sitting close by, drinking iced tea and watching the kids at their peanut war. They’d eat a few peanuts and toss a few. The greatest harm one would have expected would be a bellyache from too many raw peanuts. Unbelievably, a kid was hit in the eye with a peanut shell, scratching his eyeball. His parents rinsed it and sent him on his way, not thinking much of it. By the next day, the eye was swollen and infected. The boy ultimately lost his eye from that accident, a totally unexpected outcome.