I recently visited the optometrists not because I’d left my glasses on a bus, or sat on them or because they fell apart but because I was overdue for an eye-examination. ‘Overdue’, when I got there, means ‘over a year since the last one’. If I’d known it had only been that long I wouldn’t have bothered.
Anyway, for the first time since I started wearing glasses at the age of 21, my prescription hasn’t changed this year. Well, technically, I’m sitting right between two prescriptions. The optometrist tells me to stick with the slightly weaker one so my eyes don’t get lazy, or something. HE KNOWS ME TOO WELL.
He also told me that my eyes will have ‘settled’ now, and next time I need a new prescription it’ll be for multifocals because old-age eyesight will start to set in in my mid-forties. THINGS TO TELL A 34 YEAR OLD.
Here’s the good news: glasses technology has evolved in the last 20 years. I remember my grandmother’s bi-focals. They looked like normal glasses except for a really obvious halfmoon shape of different glass positioned smack bang in the middle of each lens. Using these early bi-focals required very strange contortions of the neck, and also of the face (for some reason). I’m glad I’ll never have to wear those things. There’s nothing like the old-fashioned type of glasses to give you an old-lady look. (Also known as the ‘cranky librarian’ look, for which they’re probably useful.)
In ten years’ time, however, I fully intend to be of an age where I can get away with wearing my glasses on a chain around my neck. Being short-sighted, I am always wearing my glasses on my face, so you may wonder about the need for a chain, except I live in Australia, and I very inconveniently require two pairs of glasses at all times — inside glasses and sunglasses for outside, to brave the harsh sunlight. Australian sunlight is harsh, winter or summer.
I have lost so many pairs of glasses over the years, juggling this huge inconvenience, and the reason I haven’t needed a new pair in two years now is down to one reason and one reason only: I wear my goddam sunglasses inside. Inside supermarkets, pharmacies, petrol stations. I tried those glasses that darken automatically for a few years, but they don’t work when you’re driving because they don’t work behind glass, and when you’re driving is when you need them the most. So those kinds of glasses are useless. Thanks though, to all the non-glasses people out there who have suggested them. ‘Transitions lenses’ also don’t darken up very quickly, resulting in tears streaming down the cheeks, if you’re like me, of Northern Irish and Scottish ancestry, with ‘very large pupils’. (An optometrist told me that once as he leaned in close. It might’ve been romantic, if not for the little torch.)
I am well aware that some people consider wearing sunglasses inside the height of rudeness. But there we have it. If you see someone wearing sunglasses inside, it may not be because they have a migraine or because they fancy themselves some sort of rock star in training. They may just be blind as a bat and sick of losing their expensive inside glasses.
1. A History Of Geeky Glasses from Jezebel
4. Experiments show we quickly adjust to seeing everything upside down from Guardian Science
5. Have Poor Eyesight? Maybe you should’ve played outside more as a kid, helpful but too late advice from Good
6. What does the world look like when you’re colour blind? from Boing Boing
7. Conquering colour-blindness with glasses from io9
8. Girls Who Wear Glasses On Halloween from The Hairpin
9. Would you ever wear Google glass? Here’s some stuff about it from someone who has worn it. (It? Them? Why drop the plural? Jezebel doesn’t know either.) They might not necessarily look geeky. They might actually look stylish. Even if you would wear such things, Cancer fears could prevent Google glass from ever becoming a phone, from Quartz. Others are more concerned about privacy issues, since someone wearing Google glasses would be able to record every interaction with you, and you wouldn’t know. As a glasses wearing individual, this is slightly concerning.
10. What do you think of 3D movies and their awesomely fashioned glasses? Here’s what I think: They give me a goddam headache. As the Film School Rejects point out: Skipping That 3D Movie To Save Money? You May End Up Paying For It Anyway.