Let’s start with Indoor Hazards:
1. Matchbox cars. Any parent of a Matchbox loving child can instantly relive the pain of stepping on one of these little babies. Usually this event happens in the dark and/or in the middle of the night. Added bonus points if the car is stepped on so it hits the arch of your foot.
2. Gears. This one should probably be my #1 on the list. I still have a scar from stepping on one of these plastic gears. It wouldn’t have been so bad if the little pointy part had not been sticking up, but it was. I got the bonus points for hitting my arch.
3. Wooden clothespins. We use these for all sorts of things around our house. We close bags of snacks, cereal bags (you know the bags inside of the boxes?), and all sorts of things. We also have a wonderful permanently installed clothesline in the laundry room, so I have ample opportunity to step on these awesome little wonders of engineering. For some reason, I managed to find one that worked its way up two flights of stairs to lie beside my bed so I could step on it when I woke bleary eyed one morning recently.
4. Legos. Again. All parents of Lego loving children have stepped on these at some point. NOT FUN! Not as painful as stepping on the Gears, though. Not by a long shot. (This includes Legos of all kinds — Duplos, too!)
5. Let’s face it, really anything smaller than your foot that is a firm object. This is why I almost always wear slippers in the house. That and the fact that my toes are constantly cold no matter what time of year. (They are cold right now and I have my slippers on!!)
6. Sand burrs and thistles (We also called the sand burrs “stickers” in my area of Indiana). You learned where they were in your yard and avoided them. This was before anyone thought of using weed killer on lawns back when the dinosaurs still roamed the earth.
7. Broken glass. Having spent the majority of my summers barefoot and outdoors as a child, I stepped on glass once in a while. I think the worst time, though, happened indoors so maybe I have this in the wrong category! Let’s add pop can tops (remember when they used to come OFF?) and glass pop bottle lids (with the flat part down of course so the wavy edge digs into your foot when you step on it) in here as well.
8. Stuff that falls off prickly bushes. Okay. Maybe this is an Indiana thing, too. We had a “prickly bush” in our front of our house under the big picture window. If you were running around outside barefoot (which we were usually doing most every day every summer), we had to remember to leave a wide berth around this bush. There were ALWAYS little prickly pokey things in the grass that must have come from that bush because there were nowhere else in the yard. Maybe my parents planted it there on purpose so we wouldn’t play near the window??
I don’t know.
It made me laugh, though, that the person who posted this picture on Flickr (CreativeCommons YAY!) called the photo “Prickly bushes” and said in the caption he remembered them from when he was younger.
9. A still burning cigarette butt someone threw on the ground. This one only happened to me once, but I still vividly remember it. I have no idea why I was “uptown” and barefoot. “Uptown” in my town (of 699 people and one stoplight) meant on the main street near the one and only stoplight. We were going into the Ye Olde Double Dip and Dunk-it to get an ice cream cone. (I still think was a fabulous name for an ice cream shop. They must have sold donuts, too, but I only remember the ice cream. There is a long story about the Ye Olde part of that. A very rich and influential man talked my whole hometown Main St. into transforming itself into King Arthur’s court. The bank was called “The Counting House” and was built to look like a castle. Most of the other Main St. businesses had names like “Princess Parlor” and such. I digress.) Anyway, someone had thrown down a still burning cigarette butt and I stepped on it full weight with my bare foot. PAIN!!! Yikes. Smoking is disgusting anyway, but if people must smoke, they should dispose of the butts in a responsible manner.
10. Sharp rocks as you wade into (inevitably cold) water. I’m thinking here of Lake Superior mostly but also of the beach where we swam in Turkey this summer. The residents had built a little wooden bridge with a rail so everyone could avoid stepping on the underwater rocks. The bridge got you safely out to the sandy part with your tender feet pain free.
I’m sure you have other things you could add to my list. Feel free to share! Venting is good every once in a while.