Tuesday, April 21, 2009

My Eyeballs

We all go through our lives not knowing what we don’t know. Some things we learn by education or experience. Some things we assume through extrapolation of what we do know (the “educated guess”). At some point, we decide we know enough to function. Nobody tries to know everything, and those who claim to know everything are treated with suspicion or outright derision. Except for religious leaders who claim to know everything, but are somehow treated with respect.


Anyway, I got a shock at my annual eye exam about six months ago. My doctor told me that the lenses of my eyes were beginning to yellow, which is perfectly normal at my age, but is considered a precursor to cataracts. She then went on to say that it was caused by exposure to sunlight.

Excuse me? Light is harmful to eyes? Isn’t that like water being harmful to fish? How could I go through my whole life without someone telling me this?

She said that I should consider wearing sunglasses. Now she tells me! If someone had said something when I was 12 years old, I would have been wearing sunglasses all my life.

The thing is, I have dark eyes and light doesn’t bother me. I always assumed that the people wearing sunglasses were people with light-colored eyes, who found strong sunlight bothersome or painful. Or they were trying to look cool. I went through a “trying to be cool” phase in the 80’s and got a pair of prescription aviator-style sunglasses. But they were expensive and I had to keep them in an uncool bulky case, and eventually I needed bifocals and gave up trying to be cool.

So in a panic, I ran out and got myself a pair of clip-on sunglasses. They work well, but because they don’t have that temple piece, I can’t just hook them over the neck of a t-shirt when I go indoors. The little clips don’t hold securely, and they’re always falling off. And there is no way I’m going to buy those stupid baseball-style flip-up clip-on sunglasses.

Anyway, they fell off while I was doing yard work, and I couldn’t find them. I had to go out and buy another pair. Today my daughter found the first pair in a planting bed, so now I have two pair. At this rate, I should have about 30 pair by the time I die, and the mortician will wonder how a man with so many pairs of sunglasses had developed such terrible cataracts.


Anonymous said...

The plural of "pair" is "pair"? Really?

Tim said...

Yes. Youse all should know that.

burton said...

I never really thought about it. I have dark eyes and I cannot deal with too much brightness. I have worn sunglasses since just before I was old enough to drive. I went through a cool sunglass phase -- in the 90's, I had found a pair of Oakleys. Like all sunglasses that you like, they were eventually lost. If you really do not like a pair of sunglasses, you will never lose them. For this reason, I do not spend a lot of money on sunglasses and tend to cringe when I see someone else dishing out the cash.