A 52-year old woman has sued underwear giant Victoria’s Secret for an eye injury caused when a metal clip securing a rhinestone heart to a thong flew off and injured her cornea. This is another example of just how readily litigious our society has become—not to mention how dangerous it is to wear thong underwear.
Monica Lewinsky proved the latter point quite some time ago. Maybe that’s the reason fashion seemed to at least attempt to go the other way for a while, with boxer shorts for women becoming popular in recent years—complete, in some cases, with vestigial flyfront but no rhinestone hearts. The shorts look good on the models—but then again, so would gunny sacks. That doesn’t mean everyone should go for them; not very flattering to most.
But back to Macrida Patterson, the plaintiff in this case; no boxer-short-wearer she. I looked in vain at the Victoria’s Secret website for the offending attack thong and could not find it (you can do your own search, buddies.) But Ms. Patterson claims the buckle flew off with great force and hit her in the eye, causing enormous pain and a corneal abrasion.
This story has been worked mostly for laughs. But when I heard it I must say I could identify.
No, I haven’t been wearing thongs with rhinestone hearts, nor am I suing anyone, much less Victoria’s Secret. But a similar injury happened to me over twenty years ago at the much-less-exciting hand of some ski gear.
I was shopping for a staple of the New England wardrobe for the young mother, those warm and water-resistant overpants that even non-skiers such as me need in that climate for playing outside with the kid in the snow, whether it be sledding, making snow angels, or just the traditional snowball fight.
They were hanging on slack hangers, fastened by clips gripping the tops of the pants—which, when worn, would have come up to a spot a bit above the waist, somewhat like overalls. From these tops dangled the long straps that would fasten over the shoulder in suspender fashion, holding them up during even the most vigorous play.
I was seeking to view the price of the pair I wanted to try on, and so I took the strap and flicked it away the better to see the tag that it happened to be covering. What I didn’t foresee was that the metal buckle fastened to the end of the strap came at me with enormous speed, something like the end of a whip, so quickly that the protective mechanism that ordinarily causes us to close our eyes when an object is flying at them had no time to operate.
That buckle hit me in the open eye and caused—yes, a corneal abrasion. And yes, it did hurt quite a bit. And yes, like Ms. Patterson, I had to have what I believe were steroids placed in my eye, and then a patch over that.
My injury healed uneventfully; the news is mum on what might happen to Ms. Patterson’s. But it never for a moment occurred to me to sue anyone. Why would I? The store certainly wasn’t negligent in the way the pants were placed on the hangers. Sometimes accidents just happen.
Pretty soon, if this continues, we’ll end up having warning labels on every product that is sold.