Black Eye, or, The Perils of Laundry

Third blog entry, and yet another headline beginning with “black”. No, this is not an obsession; it’s pure coincidence. Really.

I have, in what we shall call a laundry-related incident, given myself a black eye.

I wasn’t even doing the laundry, she cries. I was only picking up a sock. One sock.

It fell off the heap of the unsorted on the bed. I bent to pick it up. The curtains of my flowing blonde locks, as a journalist once described them (they are at least flowing, as I’m growing my hair long again; blonde is relative and unevenly-brownish more accurate) swung forward, cutting off all peripheral vision and, apparently, depth perception. There was an audible thunk as the edge of my eye-orbit bone hit the top edge of the rocking chair. I spent a quarter of an hour lying down with a cold-pack on my eye, in the hopes this would do something to obviate the inevitable.

It didn’t.

It’s a delicate, ladylike black eye, a quarter-circle of a black eye, not the impressive schoolyard battle-trophy that I remember the boys sporting from time to time in my youth. It does take some explaining, though. If only I could manfully mutter, “Defending a lady’s honour,” or “airbag”, or even, “dognose” which is something that happens to people: they get a joyfully-leaping snout in the eye. But, “Sock fell off the bed. Rocking chair.” Ohhh. How embarrassing. “Chronic oafism,” the Spouse says, which is not very consoling.

But, I was just into the local bookstore to pick up a book (Aaronvitch, Midnight Riot, aka Rivers of London, which by the way I have just finished – great combination of Scotland-yard mystery and horror-fantasy and very well-written – and the latest issue of Archaeology): the clerk and I ended up staring at one another, then breaking into laughter. She has a mirror-image eye, an ice-and-puppy incident. It must be going around.


About K.V. Johansen

The author of Blackdog, The Leopard, The Lady, and Gods of Nabban, epic fantasies from Pyr, I also write for teens and children, including the "Torrie", "Warlocks of Talverdin", and "Cassandra Virus" series, and the "Pippin and Mabel" picture books, as well as a couple of short story collections and two works of adult literary criticism on the history of children's fantasy literature. I have a Master's degree in Mediaeval Studies, and read a lot of fantasy, science fiction, and history. Blog at
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