#695 Walking around with a black eye

more painful than it looksLast year I went to play badminton with my friend Jon.

Yes, it turned out he was a member of the local racket (hey-ohhhhh!) and was in the business of casually inviting friends to join him for a night as his Doubles Partner.

Now badminton, like all sports, was completely foreign to me so I had a pile of excuses ready when he asked including: “I don’t have a racquet”, “I don’t have a ball”, “I don’t know how to play”, and finally my trusty failsafe “No.”

But Jon would have none of it.

“Come on, I’ll pick you up and drop you off. You can use my extra equipment and I’ll bring a bottle of water for you. Plus, the guys there are really easy going and casual. You’ll have a great time. Come on, it’ll be fun.”

There was a bit of a Mexican standoff as we sized each other up, squinted a bit, and jutted our chins out, but eventually I sucked it up, threw on some sweatpants, and went along for the ride.

Turns out Jon was a liar.

high flying asian superstarsI entered the dimly lit high-school gymnasium to the sight of high-flying Asian superstars spiking the birdie in all directions. Zipping and zooming across the court, they leapt three, four, five feet off the ground, whacking the bird in high-stakes, high-drama back and forth exchanges.

“Oh, it’s not as tough as it looks,” Jon said to my pale and worried face. “And don’t worry — no one cares how good you are. They just want to get some exercise.”

I stared at Jon with a worried glance, but eventually unpeeled my racquet, yanked up my tube socks, shivered a few times, and stepped timidly onto the court, where I proceeded to immediately get beaned in the eye by a well-smacked birdie. People, I’m telling you straight up: I got shuttlecocked.

It happened quick and I dropped my racquet stunned, cupping my eye with both hands and sucking air in loudly like a wheezy Shop-Vac. Throbbing, swelling, bruising fast, I was experiencing the birth of my first-ever black eye.

Thick and dark, purple and navy blue, I sported the┬ábig fat shiner for the next week at work. And it felt great, it felt liberating, it felt like I was free — because for once I wasn’t a wimp. No, for a moment I shed my thin, fragile shell and motored around town as a fighting thug with an attitude problem. The black eye screamed “Don’t mess with me”, “Don’t make me do it again”, and “You should see the other guy.”

Now, don’t get me wrong: it’s not great to get nailed in the face. Eyes are delicate little peeled grapes which we don’t want squash balls, door corners, or accelerating fists smacking into. All I’m saying is that if it happens and everything works out fine, then just enjoy that week of walking around with a black eye, tough guy.

AWESOME!

population you

Photos from: here, here, and here

40 thoughts on “#695 Walking around with a black eye

  1. I just hope you came up with a better story to tell everyone than, “I got shuttlecocked,” or, “An Asian man hit me with a birdie.”

    I’m not sayin’, I’m just sayin’ is all. : )

  2. All fine and dandy if you are a dude!

    I had a black eye and the pitying looks people gave me all said, “I hope she leaves him soon and gets help.”

    This is one awesome thing that is gender specific.

  3. Ah ha ha, I love how the “possibly related post” is “Tips on how to get gorgeous without makeup”. Who knew? And, once again, the bottom photo puts an awesome final touch on a superbly written entry.

    On a side note, our family has recently been playing some back-yard badminton, and I had no idea it could be so dangerous!

  4. A few points:
    1) I was considered quite the badminton player in my time, once making it to the provincial finals in high school. I used to tell people: “Maybe you play badminton, but I play good-minton…” Ahhhh! See what I did there?
    2) Americans have no idea how to pronounce the word. They say: “Bad-Mitten” as opposed to pronouncing it like it is actually spelled.
    3) Having a black-eye is all well and good towards making you feel manly, but dude – you NEED to come up with a better story, or all your macho street cred is out the window when you explain that you got it playing with your birdie. *SNAP*

  5. Nope, I’ve never had a black eye. However, I’ve had a broken nose and that means two black eyes! The black and blue eyes weren’t too bad looking, but about a week later, those green and yellow bruises were really attractive . . . Not!

    1. I couldn’t agree more. I got kicked in the face by a crowd surfer a couple years back, and it was so incredibly awesome– until the extensive bruising turned a lovely shade of puke green. At that point, I was scrambling for makeup to cover it with.

  6. Back in junior high football practice, I caught an elbow in the eye and cracked the orbital bone. Half my face was black, blue, yellow, and a little green. The coach made me dress for our next two games and stand by the opposing teams while they warmed up. He told me to tell anyone who asked about it, “Oh, this? It happened in PRACTICE!!”

  7. I clearly remember the event, in slow motion, of course: the proverbial deer in the headlights look on Neil’s horrified face before impact, the moment the shuttlecock embedded itself in Neil’s eyebag, the aftermath of apologies from “coach” (the 50+ Asian guy who shuttlecocked Neil) and from me, the “liar”, and the small red scrape under his eye that matured into a shiny purple bubble.

  8. Haha, I hear you on this one. One time my sister accidentally kicked me in the eye and I had a black eye for a while. It was wicked sick.

  9. Just yesterday i had quite the scuffle involving a bike, my face, and the pavement. I awoke today to find that i had no depth perception due to one eye being puffed and purpled closed. I’m cool with it, but this happily plopped the cherry on top of my week, thank you for speaking the truth for me!

    I’ve been reading since #1000, always loved it, always will.

    Ryan.

  10. This post brought back fond memories of “Fight Club”. The prideful black eye… If you haven’t seen it, rent it tonight.

  11. I totally got a black eye a few years back playing ultimate frisbee. Just as I reached my arms out to make that o so sweet save the frisbee got an extra burst of speed and slipped between my hands just before my fingers closed on it. The frisbee then managed to strike me right in the eye giving me a colored eyelid, who needs makeup anyway? Black eyes are much more macho!

  12. Ive only had a black eye twice in my life. The first time I was about 4 or 5 and my older brother hit me in the face with a baseball bat. The second time I was about 12 and me and this other girl were playing around seeing how close we could get our fists to each others faces without actually hitting the face. Well….. per the rules of the game, she lost…but I was the one with the black eye. Told my mom I ran into a door. Funny thing is, I just did that about an hour ago and bent my glasses. I’m such a dork.

  13. The only black eye I can remember having was given to me half way through exam week at the end of my sophomore year in high school. I asked the doctor in the ER that gave me stitches to give me a note excusing me from my final two exams (spanish and math, my two worst) but he refused because we had the same name and didn’t think the school would believe it! I walked in on the last day with a stitched up black eye and felt so special =D

  14. When I was first married, my wife hit me while we were sleeping and gave me a black eye. I was in the Navy at the time and when my Chief asked what had happened, I told him and we both laughed. He turned me into the Chaplin as a victim of spousal abuse. My wife and I laugh about that to this day!

  15. I GOT HIT IN THE EYE PLAYING SCHOOL BASEBALL. I HAD IT FOR ABOUT 4 MONTHS. IT WAS PRETTY SERIOUS I ALMOST NEEDED SURGURY BUT NOW WHENEVER PEOPLE PUT ON THAT WORRIED LOOK AND ASK ME ABOUT IT I CANT HELP BUT LAUGH CAUSE IT WASNT THAT BAD FOR ME. IM A SERVER AT OUR CHURCH AND AT THE MASS, THE PRIEST SAID IN FRONT OF EVERYONE, “I THINK YOU ALL NOTICED OUR SERVER HERE WITH THE BLACK EYE AND ID LIKE TO SAY NEITHER ME OR THE DEACON(WHO WAS ALSO AT THE MASS)DID IT TO HIM. PEOPLE LAUGHED :-) i AM OK AND NOTHING GOT OUT-OF-WHACK

  16. I once had a big, fat blue eye and lost a part of one of my incisors and had to work at a till in a big supermarket. That was really annoying, everyone asked me what I had done or was making stupid jokes or looked somewhat weird. :D
    The most badass black eye I had was supplemented with cuts over and under that eye which had to get sewn and when I left the hospital I was wearing the blood-sprankled t-shirt from the day it happened. lol People looked funny.

  17. Is Colourful, Memorable and Creative English!
    And YOUR story, (as well as Jon’s version), rather funny!

  18. I’ve never had a black eye, but I got stitches just above my eye when I got a rock thrown at me. Also I remember getting a bloody nose once after being beamed in the face with a ball. I didn’t understand why everyone was staring at me so much until i realize I had blood running down my face. Ick, but it still had that cool, tough feeling.

  19. Having several small facial scars, the result of an active childhood, I get the pleasure of people noticing them randomly halfway through a conversation and going ‘OMG what happened to you? How long have you had THAT?’… unfortunately, no cool stories attached to any of them :/

  20. Omg this was one of the funniest posts. It hurts and all when you get a black eye but it makes you laugh after you think about how you got it later!

Comments are closed.