After my optometrist used his antique equipment to determine what I’d been saying all along, that I can’t see, he posed what I could only assume was a philosophical question. “Do you want to see near or far?” I said “Near?” and he said “Yes grasshopper, you are wise.” Actually, he just nodded his head and made a note in my permanent record.
Anxious, I asked him if “near” was the right answer. When he didn’t respond I assumed it was one of those trick questions that have no “right” answer; a puzzle wrapped in an enigma wrapped in a turducken. But as it turned out I wasn’t making a philosophical, hypothetical, rhetorical decision; he was literally giving me the option of seeing near or far.
I told the optometrist that I loved the idea of being able to see both far and near…and wide, I guess. He said I couldn’t have it all anymore; it’s either near or far. I reminded him that I am an American with all rights due a full citizen, including having it all. He was unimpressed. I would have to wear glasses for either driving or reading. After much deliberation about street signs and oncoming traffic I realized seeing far was probably best for driving, and I would just deal with reading glasses as necessary.
On the drive home I was delighted with my far-sight. It turns out that traffic lights have three separate colors, and there are lines painted on the road to separate the lanes! When I got home I grabbed my laptop, or at least what I hoped was my laptop because it was small and warm but neither furry nor purring; grabbed my reading glasses, and was able to see reasonably well. Victory!
The next morning I put in my contact lenses and started putting on make-up. Ooops! Almost forgot I need my reading glasses for anything near. OK, now that I’ve got my reading glasses on I can see the tube of mascara and…you know where I’m headed, right? I’d have to take my glasses off to apply the mascara, and once I took off my glasses I couldn’t see my eyelashes, the mascara or my hand. Hmm.
I just kind of swiped the mascara near my eyelashes in the hopes the two would meet. I estimate that 42% of my lashes came into contact with the mascara. I couldn’t really see the results but I’m pretty sure it didn’t look so hot. No problem, because I had a new plan for day two. Put on make-up before I put my contact lenses in, when I can still see up close. Can’t fool me twice! All set.
My mascara and eye shadow looked terrific until I put my contacts in and the dripping lens solution ran down my eyes and rendered me a raccoon. Waterproof mascara is only so waterproof.
So there you have it. With my new lenses I can drive anywhere…but I can’t leave the house looking like this.
*Credit to Burt Bacharach and Hal David for the lyrics