When I woke up in my sleeping bag and realized Chris’s glass eye had fallen out of its socket in the night, I began to scream. I screamed like a man awakening to find his best friend’s hollow, bloody socket staring at him across the smoldering ashes of last night’s campfire.
Chris was my stuffed tiger. I’d named him after a kid who’d convinced me to ride my Big Wheel in the street, even though riding tricycles in the street was forbidden by my mother. Like any cyclist with a “share the road” mentality, Chris (the kid, not the tiger) believed the onus was on the motorist not to crush our tiny child-sized skulls with their enormous 1980s car grills.