I am as blind as a bat, and have been for a long time. Thank goodness for contact lenses; most of the time when I’m banging into stuff it’s just because I’m clumsy, not because I’m blind. I guess that’s good news?
When Lasik surgery came along I carefully considered it for 2-3 minutes before deciding I’m dead-set against it. First of all, there’s my shower. Being blind can be a real advantage when there’s stuff you don’t want to see. I walked in my shower with my glasses on once and noticed a film of soap on the glass and a crack in one of the tiles and all kinds of other crap I wish I didn’t know about. Blind is bliss.
The other thing about Lasik is that I am a big chicken. I’ve been through a lot of bizarro medical procedures, and I do just fine as long as I don’t see anything. Eyes closed, off to the happy place in my head. My happy place is a memory of a beautiful afternoon on Santorini; a great breeze and crystalline water and…OK, never mind. This isn’t a blog about my happy place, but keep in mind it was one of the best days ever. And not just the beach either-there was fresh feta cheese involved too.
Boy I love a good digression. But back to the matter at hand; the problem with laser eye surgery is that by definition, I have to look. I can’t close my eyes and that just doesn’t work for me. And if I needed another reason, well, these are my eyes. Bad as they are I have become accustomed to them and would really hate for anything to happen to them. My contact lenses are comfortable and put up with a lot of abuse, so Lasik is a no go.
I recently noticed that everything I looked at was a little blurry, and not in a Vaseline-on-the-lens romantic way either, more in a what-the-hell-does-that-street-sign-say fashion. So last week I dragged my sorry butt to the optometrist. He looked at my eyes and then yammered on about my right eye getting a lot worse, but it was hard to pay attention because I was sort of fascinated with the equipment. In every other doctor’s office I see nothing but new technology. Everything beeping and buzzing and scanning and shiny and new.
Why was that not evident at the eye doctor? As we went through the torture of “which is better, this or this?” in which I was supposed to figure out imperceptible changes in clarity it dawned on me that this is the same way we figured things out when I was a kid. It’s 2013, why isn’t there an app for this? And that’s what I inquired about when the doctor asked me if I had any questions. He confirmed that the equipment he uses has been around for about 50 years, maybe more. I mean, when’s the last time you saw a knob on a piece of equipment?
I don’t get it. I’ve become more and more accustomed to letting technology do all my thinking. TiVo tells me what to watch, Amazon tells me what to read, Twitter streamlines the important “news” of the day, no brain required. Why can’t some algorithm figure out my vision correction?
I’m begging the folks at Apple to develop an iEye. If I can see the line forming to buy one, I’ll be right there.