Buckyballs and Buckycubes, those addictive little magnetic beads and blocks that were all the rage last holiday season and which Wellesley Toy Shop sold hundreds of back then, are increasingly hard to come by now.
That’s because the Consumer Product Safety Commission filed a lawsuit against the maker of the stress-relievers over the summer and the company has now stopped making them (though you can still get whatever’s still lying around online). That action had product liability lawyers licking their chops.
“Due to baseless and relentless legal badgering by a certain four letter government agency, it’s time to bid a fond farewell to the world’s most popular adult desk toys, Buckyballs and Buckycubes. That’s right: We’re sad to say that Balls & Cubes have a one-way ticket to the Land-of-Awesome-Stuff-You-Should-Have-Bought-When-You-Had-the-Chance,” manufacturer Maxfield & Oberton wrote recently on its website.
The company did include a warning on its packages that the Buckyballs were not for little ones and should not be ingested, but apparently some little ones and their parents can’t read or couldn’t resist sticking the shiny items in their mouths. The concern about the Buckyballs is that people would eat them and then they’d stick together along the intestinal walls, requiring surgery to get them out.
The manufacturer marketed the products to adults, and retailers such as Wellesley Toy Shop displayed them in the non-kid part of their store, but those safeguards weren’t enough to satisfy the feds in this case. A couple million of the Buckyball kits were sold in the U.S. since going on the market a few years back.