Let’s talk about specs

Clearly, I’ve not felt a strong obligation to this blog since touching back down in the States. Why? There are no acceptable mosaics here. My well of inspiration is dry as a bone.

Just kidding. I haven’t been writing as often as usual because I am in the throes of the busiest summer of my life – working, coffeehouse-hopping, reading, sunbathing (and lying to my doctor about it), sleeping, not sleeping, busing, catching up with friends, wearing baseball caps, honing my skills as a cocktail artiste. I’ve checked out a lot of short story and essay collections from the library. I’ve consumed a near-unbelievable number of iced lattes. Life has been excellent. But I did not come here to write an extensive life update. No, today I am going to talk about glasses.

I was eleven when my poor mother dragged me, an obstinate, fuming moper of a punk, to the eye doctor. We’d recently been to the opera, where I had been unable to read the English subtitles above the stage, and suddenly I was sitting in an uncomfortable chair at Walmart and they were shooting air into my eye. That day, to literally no one’s surprise, it was decided: I needed glasses. I picked a pair of small, chestnut brown frames, and then my mom bought me the new DisneyMania CD because I was upset and she’s always been too nice to me. That Disney optimism, though, did not chase away the fear that I would be labeled as a “nerd.”

That first pair of glasses brought a lot of new things into my life. First, the outlines of leaves, which had previously been indistinguishable clumps of green adorning the trees in my yard. Second, a new facial expression which involved squinching up my nose because my frames would slide down it and I was too lazy to lift a finger. Third, the beginning of an era in which my eyes are almost-closed in every picture because, as I said, my glasses often slid down my nose. As a result, subsequent pairs were very poorly documented: I effectively erased about six years of being visually impaired from the history books (my history books) by refusing to wear glasses in pictures. They would hang there, dangling from my hand, at my side. Nearly every group picture from the time I was twelve to the time I was seventeen was like this. Even in class, I would occasionally take them off if I didn’t really need to see the board. They helped me see – like, a lot – but I was embarrassed to wear them.

There was a brief period where I considered getting contacts (I was probably fourteen) – I went in to the eye doctor and they held up a giant, plastic model of a lens and placed a normal-sized tester on the tip of my finger, but I never actually put it in my eye because I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to get it out again. Irrational fear: I’m good at that. So contact lenses were, unequivocally, a “no.”

I went through three pairs of very unexciting black frames before I finally landed on the 2011 “nerd” standard – thick, black, square, with little silver things on the corners. This was when I started liking myself as a glasses-wearer. I wore them all the time, even in pictures, even to school dances, and I owned it. I don’t know why it took so long to happen, but my glasses became a part of who I was. As I would later claim (and still do claim), they became a part of my face, an extra feature. Fast-forward four years and two pairs of frames, and I don’t like taking my glasses off. I also get really offended when people think they’re fake… but that’s another story for another day.

In February, I branched out from my usual type (read: square black acetate) and ordered some chunky tortoiseshells from Warby Parker. I’ve never loved an accessory – or a necessity, for that matter – more than I love my Kimballs.

IMG_2793

And now I’m looking at getting a second pair from my beloved WP. Even though I am not one of the fortunate few who looks good in any and all frames thrown on my face, ordering the home trial boxes is slightly addictive – usually 3/5 are losers, but that leaves two winners. What is more fun than trying on glasses? I guess Disneyland is. Beside the point. Back to corrective eyewear.

In my most recent 5-day home trial, I’ve narrowed it down to two pairs: the Haskell and the Fillmore. I am strongly leaning toward one of them, I won’t say which, but feel free to cast your vote. Just for fun. I say that because I probably won’t listen to any of you because I am an incredibly stubborn young woman. Sorry.

The (Eddie) Haskell (from Leave it to Beaver, I'm sorry okay)

The (Eddie) Haskell (from Leave it to Beaver, I’m sorry okay)

The Fillmore, ft. annoying glare

The Fillmore, ft. annoying glare

In short, I am really, really happy I need glasses. They’re a pain in the ass when it rains, and they steam up when I open the dishwasher, and sunglasses are an expensive challenge. But I love the way they look, and I love that they let me see how I look – pretty useful. As an 11-year-old, I was worried my glasses would make people judge me. Now, if they warrant any label, I’d like to think that label is “bold.” Also, let me just say I completely misconstrued the concept of “nerd” as a child, and would not feel any shame whatsoever to hold that label as well – it’s just that my nerdiness and my glasses have nothing to do with one another.

And that is my corrective lens coming-of-age story. EMBRACE YOUR FLAWS!

Advertisements

Blood, Sweat, Tears, and Piles of Magazines

Such is my life.

Such is my life.

Let me just start this by saying I have a lot of stuff. Nay, a lot of crap. I’m one of those borderline hoarders – it’s enough of a problem to make my life difficult at certain moments, but not quite bad enough to land me on reality television. For that, I must say, I am thankful. But when the dreaded time comes to actually, thoroughly clean my room, I experience frustration on the level of wanting to rip my hair out strand-by-strand. Ouch.

Just picture it: one room, four corners. White, with one black accent wall (I’m sophisticated). Literally five different stacks of books, not counting the six-shelved bookcase, which is at its maximum capacity. Every issue of Lucky, Seventeen, and Teen Vogue since like September of 2007. Posters. Posters. Pictures. Movie tickets from five years ago. Little toy dinosaurs. Heaps of composition books from high school. Graduation cards, birthday cards, Valentines Day cards. Empty Jones Soda bottles, probably purchased when I was 13. Pins of all sorts. Old purses. Rocks from my fourth grade rock collection. And the state of  my closet… it is beyond the limits of your imagination, I assure you.

Well, get your clapping hands ready, people. The overwhelming nightmare of a mess put up a fight with me, but I prevailed. As a person who is very affected by atmosphere, I have never felt more in love with my room. Ah, what a feeling. It was no easy feat; it took me roughly three weeks, granted those three weeks included multiple bouts of “I can’t handle this, I quit” depression where I wasn’t working. Even with that, though, three weeks is a long time. I think what I learned from this is a) get over yourself and throw things away, b) 80’s music makes everything better, and c) sometimes you have to muscle through a gigantic pile of stuffed animals, old French assignments, and unworn and unloved t-shirts in order to play Emily Henderson, although I’m pretty sure I’ll never have a show on HGTV (a girl can dream).

In celebration of my achievement, I whipped out the ol’ Nikon and snapped some pictures of my kinda-sorta new room for your viewing pleasure, the style of which I would cleverly label “organized clutter.”

It's so airy, I love it.

It’s so airy, I love it.

My pride and joy: the collaged bookcase.

My pride and joy: the collaged bookcase.

One of my favorite little spots.

One of my favorite little spots.

That chevron crafting tape is probably one of my best and most versatile purchases to date.

That chevron crafting tape is probably one of my best and most versatile purchases to date.

Plain white wall, I took you DOWN.

Plain white wall, I took you DOWN.

Gotta love the Mouse.

Gotta love the Mouse.

Aaand, one of my more creative ideas: instead of a picture, I put my plane ticket to Paris in this frame.

Aaand, one of my more creative ideas: instead of a picture, I put my plane ticket to Paris in this frame.

I wish you all the best of luck with your cleaning endeavors! Have a great week 🙂