The eyes have it

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From last week’s post I learned an important lesson: the way to generate interactive dialogue is to talk about boobs and cars. With that in mind, I am announcing a change in the focus of this blog, away from books and libraries and toward…

Boobs! And cars!

Yesterday, with boobs safely in place, I traveled, by car, to the eye doctor.

“So you like Florida, huh?” asked my eye doctor.


“That flamingo necklace you’re wearing…”

The “flamingo necklace” was in reality “garish pink flamingo Mardi Gras beads,” but people don’t make a big deal of Mardi Gras around here so I’m afraid the message was lost. It doesn’t help that I screwed up the colors of my ensemble. I had purple, and I had green, but the best I could manage for yellow was a medium tan shade. This is because the one yellow garment I own, a tanktop, makes me look fat.

Note the semantic precision here: it makes me look fat. It is not as though I, personally, am fat. The illusion of fat came from a poorly designed top, which meant I was bereft of a decent yellow in my ensemble, which means that almost no one realized I was dressed in honor of Mardi Gras, lurid flamingo beads notwithstanding.

I swear, subtle just does not work.

Boobs! And cars!

Do Gentlemen Really Prefer Blondes?
is the catchy title of a new book—catchy enough that I checked it out from the library. The author, Jena Pincott, is a science writer who has synthesized a lot of research into human sexuality and behavior. I’m learning all sorts of stuff. For instance: even though I felt like I picked yesterday’s ensemble for a specific purpose, it turns out that my hormones influence my clothing with my even realizing it. Right around ovulation, women unconsciously dress sexier. During the rest of their cycles (and after menopause, obviously) they pick less provocative clothes.

On top of that, their bodies actually look different. The evolutionary point is to attract a mate right around the time when conception is likely to occur, so during ovulation, the lips are fuller, the complexion is smoother, the pupils are bigger. I speculate ovulation may even effect…


Except—one big caveat—none of this applies to women on hormonal birth control. Even for those of us who are not at much risk for conceiving an unintended child, hormonal birth control is great because it helps prevent several types of cancer. But it’s not so great because it negatively impacts things such as libido and sexuality and—this is really important—hormonal birth control makes me uglier because it prevents ovulation.

Given a choice between less-plump lips and cancer, I guess I’ll take the first option. But still.

“I’m getting more far-sighted,” I confessed to the doctor.

“More far-sighted? Really?”

“I’m always having to push away the computer screen.”

“Huh,” said the eye doctor. “Have you recently completed school?”

“I’ve been out for four years.”

“Maybe that explains it,” said the eye doctor. “Your eyes get more far-sighted when you spend less time reading and writing.”

Ha! Ha hahahhaaa haha haha haha ha ha! Some way, some how, I sense a flaw in the good doctor’s theory.

At any rate, the eye doctor concluded that I needed two pairs of eyeglasses—that, or eye therapy. Now I have no idea what eye therapy is, but I had visions of retinal weight-lifting or iris aerobics or something. It sounds dreadful. And expensive.

“But eye therapy is pretty expensive,” confirmed the eye doc, “so let’s try to solve your problems with a second set of glasses.”

Okey-dokey. Two glasses. Sounds a little bit awkward, but more manageable than twenty eye sit-ups. I’ll have my regular pair of glasses, and then I’ll have a pair of glasses for when I’m at the computer. Though honestly I am at the computer so often that, realistically, the only time I’ll be wearing my “regular” glasses is when I am driving…

…my car!

Having concluded that my eyes are in bad shape (which has been the case for twenty years now, but nevermind), the eye doc sent me to the salesperson. I tried on several different frames and picked out a dashing red pair.

Then the salesperson began her calculations.

With insurance—WITH insurance, mind, I’m one of the few people left in America who actually does have decent health coverage—my new glasses would come to $528.

But then my health insurance, which maybe is not so decent after all, would not cover my original pair of glasses, bring the grand total up to…

“That’s more than a month’s rent,” I said, looking at the figure that was less than a thousand dollars, but only barely. That’s when I began to cry.

Couldn’t help it. I cry all the time. (Maybe eye therapy could help with that?) Stress or anger or depression or adorable little animals—doesn’t matter, I’ll start crying. The prospect of losing more than nine hundred dollars in one morning? That’ll do it, too.

I did not mean to cry, but gosh, it was effective. The salesperson became acutely uncomfortable and bent over backwards to find me something affordable. The revised cost for visit, glasses, and other glasses now begins with the digit 2, a keen improvement over the digit 9.

Anyway. New glasses are coming. With luck they will mitigate the effects of my ovulation-deprived appearance.

Boobs! And cars!

5 responses »

  1. Not to freak you out, now, because I’m guessing it is too late for the glasses, but I bought glasses from China for $5. And they work. Pretty amazingly. I also bought a schmancy pair (rimless & hingeless) for $50. And they are even more amazing. It takes alot of time to find what you need and if you need very thick lenses you save less money, but… all in all I recommend it. Glasses are a racket. has lots of info. I was most happy with my purchase from:

  2. I’ve totally been procrastinating on getting new glasses. I got contacts to HOLD ME OVER till my new glasses were done… and um, I’ve refilled my 90-day packs of contacts twice now. Oops. I’ve been meaning to buy new glasses from, since I’ve heard a couple of success stories from there. I’ll let you know if I ever do (or, y’know, you’ll see me walking around with glasses on one day in the future and be like "WTF glasses?!") so that your next go on glasses isn’t nearly as awful. BUT, I am glad to know that the ol’ standby of crying still works. *high five* on that one!

  3. Laura,Hi! Way to lurk. Thanks for the glasses tip– though you guessed right, it’s too late for it to do any good. How are you?

  4. Cara,Like I said, the crying wasn’t done on purpose, but it did work like a charm. And I think you should get glasses. Glasses are hot.

  5. Just to confirm. I had my eyes checked at the VA hospital a week ago (so that I could drive a car, despite not having boobs) and the doc recommended optical4less right off the bat.I only need glasses for my left eye, which means I guess I could go all von-himmler style with a monacle, but don’t totally need it for driving.Try to strengthen the focus muscles. This means, basically, not wearing your glasses when you don’t absolutely have to – at home, walking around downtown, etc… assuming you can see the difference between the sidewalk and pavement and a human being, and say, a wall. Time spent without glasses will make your eyes try harder to focus, thus making them better (a little). This is not hokum – I wore coke bottles when I was young, and was told to stop wearing them when I was 12. I could read again by 14, or 15 at the latest. Seriously. Ish.


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