I had just walked into the apartment when WHUMP! Something flew into my roomie, the Commodore’s, closet door, followed by cheers from her and our neighbor, the Hamster.
“Um…whatcha doing?” I asked, tentatively tiptoeing toward her door. The Hamster popped his head around the door frame, grinning at me.
“We’re practicing with our throwing knives!” he announced. Sure enough, the two of them had stacked a pyramid of cardboard boxes in front of the Commodore’s closet and stood over by her window. With a flick of the wrist, the Commodore sent another blade flying into an Amazon Fire box. It stuck.
“This is so fun!” she exclaimed, reaching forward to pull her weapons out of the cardboard.
The Hamster proffered his knives to me, hilts first. “Do you want to try?”
“Is that even a question?!” I took the set of three knives and, after a few practice flicks, sent one hurtling toward the boxes. It hit, bounced off, and lay flat on the carpet. I sighed.
The Hamster and the Commodore told me they’d had several throws just end up sticking in the carpet, or even the closet door above and around the pyramid. (Oh well. We probably would have lost our security deposit anyway by the time we finally move out of the apartment.) But as the night went on, a lot of throws flew straight and true to their targets. I even had one go through a hole in a box to pin the back wall of the box to the closet door behind it! The Commodore was aiming for a specific box with an enemy’s name on it, while the Hamster and I were just sort of trying to stab boxes in general. The poor cookie mascot on one of them ended up rather tattered and scarred.
After a particularly bad round, where none of my throws stuck, I noted, “Even when they don’t hit, there’s something really satisfying about throwing sharp things at a great speed.” The Hamster and the Commodore enthusiastically agreed. It was like being little again and illicitly running with scissors (not that we ever did that, of course…). It was the heady feeling of realizing that we were all legal adults and could, if we felt like it, spend the evening hurling sharp bits of metal at a pile of cardboard in our own home. It was cathartic, stress relieving, and just plain fun. I could imagine myself as one of my childhood heroines in battle – never mind that the target was stationary and less than five feet away. Even though I’d never thrown a knife before in my life (and keep in mind, boys and girls, these were sets of throwing knives, specifically designed and balanced for the purpose, not like your ordinary Cutco stock), I’d always wanted to try it. And I didn’t need anyone’s permission. The opportunity just presented itself.
Of course, I never exactly expected to come home one evening and find two people in my apartment tossing blades around as a way of blowing off steam. But then again, that’s why I love my friends: we’re all a little weird.
[I feel like I should put a disclaimer: no one was hurt. We took turns and stood well out of the way while throwing and never even jokingly aimed at one another. Ironically the next day I stabbed myself while cutting an apple, but that’s another story.]