Thursday, March 18, 2010

See sells See-shells by the See-shore...

If you came here thinking this one is about tongue-twisters, am sorry, it is not.

All you lucky souls out there who have great eyesight and can spot signposts a mile away-I envy you.
Coz I am a “soda butti” as kids used to tease me when I was small-which means that my glasses are quite thick. Even the thinnest and most expensive ones are thicker than the average person’s. Of course, this was partly my fault.
I shouldn’t have read books in sub-optimal light and in sub-optimal positions, I shouldn’t have learnt by-heart the reading chart at school, I should have eaten my carrots instead of surreptitiously dumping them and I should have dutifully handed over the notes written by my teachers to my parents regarding my difficulties in seeing the blackboard. Not the blackboard as such,I'm not THAT blind-rather what was written on it. Instead with every passing year, I simply moved one row forward in class, until finally I was sitting in the first bench and still copying notes from my neighbor. Things came to a head, when spelling mistakes started occurring even then. So eventually, when I was squinting in all directions, my parents took me to the ophthalmologist.
Now if you are a person, who visits the ophthalmologist regularly, you would surely relate to me. I think it’s one of the most demoralizing and confidence-busting activities. You go in at the appointed time and wait, flipping through some outdated magazines. You are called in and the doctor makes you sit down near him/her and asks you to read the chart placed some distance away.
The first few letters are fine-I suppose even bats could read them (I said could). Progressively, the letters get smaller in size and oh what torture! You squint and stare and mumble and grumble-and mostly guess.
Is that an ‘A’ or a ‘B’? ‘H’ or ‘R’??!
And then after trying your best-you have no choice but to accept defeat and you give up. Next the doctor places a big, heavy metal frame on your nose and keeps changing the lenses. And you are supposed to repeat the process of proving that you can’t read. First the left eye and then the right eye and then both together.
Finally after much deliberation, the power is determined. Then you are sent out and someone administers some eye drops and asks you to keep your eyes closed for say 30 mins or so. The idea being to clean out all the dust and debris from your eyes before confirming that you are indeed at-least one step close to blindness. Then once the time is up-in you go again and struggle through the whole show again. At last you have your prescription and can go order your glasses.
Whew! The trial is over. At-least till the next visit.

Nowadays I guess things are a little better; since my power has pretty much stabilized-but during the growing up years it was such a pain! Also technology has improved a lot and now we have computerized eye scanning too.
But still, how blessed it would be to be able to wake up in the morning and check the time without having to search for my glasses.
How delightful to be able to jump into the swimming pool without having to worry about losing my glasses or contact lenses.
How nice it would to fall asleep without having to bother about having my glasses on or lenses in.
How interesting it would be to realize that, that handsome guy I always had a crush on is smiling at me (Yes ME) from far across the room.
How convenient it would be to realize that it is a cockroach and not a piece of dust moving in that dark corner.
And most of all how wonderful it would be to be able to stop squinting at the reading chart every year! Sigh!


  1. I think glasses give people a clever and sophisticated look. Thats why You look like a Nerd when you wear your glasses!

    Anyway, When I was in school i used to have sympathy for kids wearing glasses. Thats why even when i had a fight with them i used to think to myself "Come-on this guy can barely see, he wears can i beat him up".......coz even if you beat him up, all the girls in class would come and say to you "How can you beat a guy with GLASSES" and they would hate !

  2. @konquistador:ur mad Venu!!

  3. Wats next taste, touch or hearing. Cant be common sense coz u cant write from personal experience. But then u did manage to write a hell of a lot about NOTHING.
    AND wat was that about the handsome guy across the room huh ? x-( ???

  4. @AJ:"Cant be common sense coz u cant write from personal experience"- Ya rite!! Thts y I married u ;-)

  5. hahaa.. thats such an interesting post... i know how annoying it is to go to the doc and read those stuff there.. :) i hate going to the doc for eye check up!!!!!!:)

  6. From the tease "Soda butti" - I guess, are you Tamil?

    Anyway nice post . . .

  7. @Arun: Aamam thamizhaethaan :-)

  8. Look here, i.e., if you can, I am also "soda butti", or whatever that is (-4.00 Sph + -1.00 Cyl)! Back inour part of cpuntry, I was simply called "chashmuddin"! Man, did I hate that!

    Its debatable, but those postures that you mention didn't have any role in your eyesight going askew. I have worn semi-soft contacts for the last 26 years. Now I cannot switch back to glasses beacuse of the superior vision I get through them. Also I love photgraphy and kind of press my eye hard to the SLR viewfinders.

    All I can sya is, Cheers, and have fun.

    And that was a well written post.

  9. @Umashankar: Thank u :-)
    Ya u r right. Once we get used to contact lenses, we just cannot go back to glasses again! I started wearing glasses for more than 17 years ago. For the past 12 yrs also been using contact lenses.
    Actually my eyesight is one main reason why I didn't take up an active interest in photography-also used to hate all those prism experiments in science class!Always ended up with an headache!


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