Tall, Dark, and Mysterious


Gripes inspired by a visit to the optician

File under: Sound And Fury, Know Thyself. Posted by Moebius Stripper at 5:07 pm.
  1. Is there a research grant available for the development of a mirror of variable curvature that would allow people who aren’t wearing their old glasses to see what they’d look like in new glasses? And don’t anyone bother suggesting contact lenses, or friends with good taste. We deserve better than that. Didn’t we put men on the moon so that we could insist upon such ostensibly-simple-but-as-yet-nonexistent advances in technology?
  2. Not that I was going to get new frames anyway, as a) my current ones are still functional; b) my insurance won’t cover much more than the cost of the lenses; and, most importantly, c) the invisible hand governing trends in eyewear has decreed that peripheral vision is for nerds and old people, and hence, all of the trendy, cutting-edge glasses are basically the ocular equivalent of bikini tops that cover only the nipples. The eighties and early nineties got a lot wrong, I’ll grant, but to their credit, they did give rise to eyewear that allowed people to look up, down, or askance without twisting their necks.
  3. Not a gripe, but because there is magic in threes: I spent my entire life, until two weeks ago, without polarizing sunglasses. I don’t know how I did it. It was certainly easier when I didn’t live near large bodies of light-reflecting water.


  1. Last time my SO faced this problem, we declared that the next time she’s buying glasses, we are bringing a laptop and a digital camera. We haven’t had an opportunity to do it yet.

    - Ben Artin — 4/24/2005 @ 6:45 pm

  2. How about this:

    1) Put on the dummy pair with the new frames.
    2) Have someone take lots of pictures of you in the new frames.
    3) Put your functional pair back on your face.
    4) View just-taken photos.
    5) Repeat for each pair of frames.

    Not as fast, but doesn’t rely on nonexistent technology.

    - Nathan Sharfi — 4/24/2005 @ 6:52 pm

  3. Heh, never thought of that. But perhaps the reason I never thought of it is because I am so spectacularly unphotogenic that I can’t fathom selecting a pair of glasses that way.

    - Moebius Stripper — 4/24/2005 @ 7:10 pm

  4. If you go here and upload a photo of yourself you can scale the photo to a special size (using inter-pupillary distance as the yardstick, if I recall) and “virtually” try on different styles of glasses. I did this myself a few years back and found it actually works fairly well if you have a frontal-view face photo of yourself in which you’re more or less looking straight ahead with a level gaze. Then if you go to the store to try on the same or a similar pair as long as the size of the actual glasses is appropriate for your own inter-pupillary distance (i.e., the center of each lense is centered in front of each eye, meaning the glasses “fit” you) the appearance should be quite similar, frontally, to what you saw online.

    - wes — 4/24/2005 @ 7:53 pm

  5. That link is so cool.

    Our putting-men-on-the-moon has not been in vain!

    - meep — 4/25/2005 @ 5:44 am

  6. Yeah, now this is why I have a blog. Unfortunately, I haven’t had much luck with upload-your-photo-and-watch-the-transformation programs. Remember the “change your ethnicity” program? Other people looked genuinely black or Asian or such, whereas I just looked distorted.

    - Moebius Stripper — 4/26/2005 @ 6:42 am

  7. Well, this old joke should absolutely make your day:

    A guy goes to his doctor and says, “Doc, I’m seeing
    blue and pink spots in front of my eyes!”

    The doctor asks: “Have you seen an optomotrist?”

    The guy answers: “No, just blue and pink spots!”


    — Cousin Dave, who’s just about to give in and go buy some reading glasses so he can see the font in this comment box.

    - Cousin Dave — 4/26/2005 @ 11:16 am

  8. Aw, gee, Cousin Dave, is it that bad? Is it the size? the contrast? the font?

    - Moebius Stripper — 4/26/2005 @ 8:12 pm

  9. Have you used your new shades to do that thing with the car windows yet? Many many car windows, viewed through polarized lenses, have spots in a checkerboard pattern. Tilt your head from shoulder to shoulder and they slide back and forth, like being on acid.


    - Tarid — 4/27/2005 @ 12:47 pm

  10. Hunh, never tried that - I don’t own a car (except for the two-wheeled one that runs on electricity), though I rent one every few weeks. I didn’t notice the effect you describe last week, in a rather oldish Pontiac, but I guess it’s just as well that I didn’t have the sensation of being on acid while I was in control of a motor vehicle going 110 km/h.

    - Moebius Stripper — 4/27/2005 @ 7:24 pm

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