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A couple Fridays ago, I had what might be considered a bad day.
As I was getting ready to leave for work, I broke my glasses. Well, actually, the glasses broke themselves because I did not do anything to facilitate any breakage, so I blame it on the glasses.
It’s entirely possible that a week before, I hit myself in the face with a door while wearing said glasses, but the glasses looked and felt fine. So I went about my business, albeit with a sore face and a headache.
My wife, being as wonderful as she is, found me another pair of glasses in a junk drawer. These were an old pair of glasses, but they seemed to work — and that’s another reason why you don’t ever throw anything out from your junk drawer.
“New” glasses on my face, I finished getting ready. These glasses were crooked and wobbly and did not want to stay on my face, but I liked the frames when I first got them, so I figured I could deal with a little crookedness and wobbliness for a few days.
I gathered all my work things and headed for the door when I stopped to pet Cooper on the way out. He wanted to play, so I did, and promptly got bitten on the heel of my hand when Cooper decided to be a little rough. Two bleeding puncture wounds, broken glasses and wobbly replacements — and I still hadn’t left the house.
A lot of you are asking yourselves why I didn’t just admit defeat and stay home. Well, folks, I need to keep a roof over my head and food on my table, so I had to go to work. Forty five minutes in the car and I keep fidgeting with the wobbly glasses to get them to stay on my face. The right earpiece just would not stay behind my ear, and every time I would move my head, the glasses felt like they were falling off. I was thinking this was going to be a long day.
For most of the morning, I can’t keep my fingers off the glasses because they feel weird and don’t fit. I should have left well enough alone, because I discovered why they were wobbly and I managed to fix that. There is a little peg on the earpiece that fits into a little hole on the frame hinge, and this had worked its way out a little. All I had to do was push it in and hope it stayed.
To make a long story short, it didn’t stay — and the replacement glasses broke as well. I call my wife and tell her I broke the second pair of glasses.
As luck would have it, there was a third pair of glasses at home. These were not bifocals, they were about 15 years old, but they fit and I could mostly see. Wearing them, I realized that I did in fact need the bifocals because there was this big dead zone where I couldn’t see well at all, and that was the zone in which most of the things I needed to see were normally seen.
My wife drove the 45 miles to where I work and delivered the third pair of glasses. She asked me why I didn’t just get the old prescription sunglasses out of the car and wear those until I got home, My old prescription sunglasses that live in my car are black Ray-Ban Wayfarers. That particular day was rainy and gray and I didn’t want to spend my whole workday being mistaken for a blind man or Roy Orbison, which is worse than a blind man because Roy Orbison has been dead for years.
I managed to make it through the day and the following day an I went to a retail glasses place and had my bifocal lenses just put into new frames. Didn’t cost a lot and I didn’t even use my vision insurance.
The downside is my old frames were tortoiseshell and these are black, and I’m getting tired of people calling me Mr. Slate (from “The Flintstones”) or Mel Cooley. Those of you who are too young to remember either, Google them and then Google me. I rest my case.
A final note at the end of this column. That day was not just about glasses. When I was leaving the office that evening, I shut a door on my finger. It really hurt. I don’t know if it was swollen or anything, because when I looked down at it, I couldn’t see it.
Joe Weaver, a native of Baltimore, is a husband, father, pawnbroker and gun collector. From his home in New Bern, he writes on the lighter side of family life.