Monday, August 19, 2019

Glasses, half empty

As my caricatured avatar attests, even without speaking: I wear glasses. I've done so since eighth grade, in fact. (Editor's note: I'm still technically in eighth grade.) That's why spending a day on the job last week for the first time ever without my spectacles felt bizarrely momentous.

I was several miles into my bike commute, taking in the world through prescription root-beer lenses, when I registered the day's general overcast-ness. Guess I didn't need these sunglasses after all, I thought to myself -- a thought chased quickly by the high-definition mental image of my regular eyeglasses lying on the kitchen counter where I had placed them during the process of packing my work bag that morning. If I swore in this moment, it wasn't aloud.

I cycled through obvious solutions like turning back for home (too late), passing the day as a celebrity whose eye candy for all settings and light levels is sunglasses (too eccentric), and letting the day pass in a literal as well as metaphoric blur. The last option proved the path of least resistance, my nearsightedness navigating most tasks passably while stirring up servings of empathy for students with mediocre vision who sit far from projector screens. I'll take a page from Robert Ludlum and title my experience The Mr. Magoo Solution.

10 comments:

  1. Amusing post...I say as I read this through my glasses without which I couldn't.

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  2. I've had glasses since second grade. All of us "Mr. Magoos"(or Ms.) can relate!

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  3. Just read your post through specs of my own. Nothing wrong with having four eyes!

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  4. I don't think I could make it through a day without my glasses. Maybe it would be fun to try?

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    1. Well, it wasn't *not* fun, in my experience ;) Then again, I cheated: I had prescription specs of the tinted variety that I used for commuting.

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  5. I don't have glasses, but I have passed several days in metaphoric blurs... Did your students notice your nearsighted bumbling? I'm impressed that this is the first time this has ever happened!

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    1. Only one student worked up the nerve to say something to me. ("Don't you usually wear glasses?) For the record, he wears glasses himself. A couple of colleagues also commented.

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  6. I am the same height I was in 8th grade (1977-78) and got glasses in 9th. I used to take my glasses off to walk the dog or do other outdoor activities because I am far-sighted. As age has crept into my vision, I now wear them all day everyday, even to walk the dog. I can't read without them, so a day at school would be interesting. Kids would have to read everything aloud to me. Could be interesting.

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  7. I feel your pain. I’ve worn glasses (or contacts) since I was seven, actually got my first pair at five. I live in fear of breaking my glasses while traveling so always have a spare pair in my bag.

    I think I would have opted for the Hollywood vibe.

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