Danger looms along our golden shores, and I’m not referring to the rash of shark encounters we’ve had here this summer.
I was nailed two weeks ago by a flying object that I identified much too late.
“Heads up,” someone yelled.
I heeded the call and noticed a disc growing larger by the split second as it spun toward my face. Wham-O! Right on the bridge of the nose.
Everything went dark — outlines of sharks teeth danced in my head — and tears welled in my eyes.
I’m not going to lie. My first instinct was to start cussing, but two young gentlemen inquired about my health before I could spew any venom. It was their Frisbee that had sailed off course. I told them I was fine, smiled, and thanked them for their concern. They didn’t do it on purpose. Accidents happen.
They just happen to me a lot more often than they happen to most people. I’ve been hit by seashells tossed by youngsters, struck in the legs twice by plummeting kites, plowed over by rafts, and wrapped in fishing lines more times than most pier pilings. The city’s Surf Rake once shredded my belongings, including sneakers, a valued t-shirt and 100 sand dollars. That was a few years back when tens of thousands of sand dollars washed ashore over two or three nights.
I’ve had a Gore-Tex jacket, shirts, sweatshirts and sneakers stolen from the beach. While theft isn’t an accident, those incidents can still be thrown into the “bad vibe” category.
You know what hasn’t happened to me yet? I’ve never been bitten by a shark. In the hundreds of times that I’ve gone in for a swim (or a pee), I’ve only seen them near me in the water on a handful of occasions. That doesn’t mean they weren’t there. They were. Thankfully, they prefer sushi.
For those of you who might not know, we had four people bitten within a half-hour in mid-June. They sustained foot and leg injuries. Accidents happen. The sharks, believed to have been Blacktips, mistook the victims’ flesh for fish. Trust me. You have a better chance of being slammed in the schnoz by a Frisbee than you do of being bitten by shark along the Grand Strand.
Incidently, the Frisbee was originally called a Pluto Platter. Wham-O bought the rights to it in 1957 and marketed it as the Frisbee a year later. The company also marketed slingshots, the Hula Hoop, Slip ‘N’ Slide and — my personal favorite — the Super Ball.
Wham-O is such a huge part of Americana. Too bad it took a Frisbee to the face to remind me.