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Shading the Truth About Shades
I have a problem with sunglasses.
My problem involves the fact that I can very seldom find any I like, and when I do, I invariably lose them or break them, usually within a few days of purchase.
You Freudian analysts out there will, of course, interpret this to mean that I really don’t want to wear sunglasses at all, probably because my mother forced me to eat Cheerios, or something like that. I think that could fairly be called “overanalyzing the situation.”
Mostly I think it’s just a case of me being kind of clumsy with them. OK, very clumsy.
“Just buy cheap ones,” my friends have said. “That way, when you lose them or break them, you can just go buy another pair. No big deal.”
Obviously they have never dealt with sunglass clumsitude on a scale like mine. Case in point: The other Saturday, I had to swing by Target to buy some sunglasses to replace the ones I left somewhere. Then I went out to run errands. Two hours later, at a Farmer’s Market, they fell out of my shirt pocket and on to the floor, where I promptly applied one of my size 11 Red Wing work boots, the left one, to them. And so I also stopped at Target on the way home.
“Get some expensive ones, so you’ll take better care of them,” my other friends have said. Once again, bad idea. When last seen, my $350 prescription sunglasses were riding around in the back seat of a taxi cab in Omaha. By themselves.
I’ve only had one pair of prescription sunglasses I did not break or lose. I still have them, in fact. They’re left over from my rock and roll days when I went to the optician looking for drama.
“What are these?” I asked, pointing to a pair of Ray-Bans.
“Those are the Roy Orbison models with standard lenses,” said the bored hipper-than-thou clerk. What is it about these people who think selling sunglasses makes them cooler than everyone else? At any rate …
“Can they be made darker?”
“Sure. How’s this?” she asked, holding up a smoky gray lens.
“This?” A darker lens.
“Still too light.”
“Well, that leaves this,” she said, holding up a piece of glass so opaque it might as well have been onyx. “We don’t recommend them, though, because they’re so dark. They’re called the Stevie Wonders.”
“Perfect,” I said.
So that’s what I got: The Roy Orbison Autograph Models with the Stevie Wonder Option Pack (talent not included).
And as I said, I still have them, although I can’t use them. Number one, my prescription has changed. Not that it would make much difference. They weren’t kidding about these things being dark. They’re so dark as to be useless. You would have to be standing in the Sahara at high noon to see your hand in front of your face.
Oh, well. There are lots worse problems to have, I’ll grant you. Not that long ago, I could hardly see at all, day or night. Adding “sunglasses” to the budget is short beer compared to being blind.
And now, if you’ll excuse me, I must go. I need to go to Target. You know why.
© 2010 Mike Redmond. All Rights Reserved.
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