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Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Adventures With Glasses

Friday, May 14th at 6:10 am, I'm cleaning my glasses at the Evil Day Job (EDJ), when tragedy struck. My glasses broke at the solder point between the bridge and the rim around the lens. The thing that's ironic is just two days earlier, I'd been talking to my parents about picking up some new glasses, but earlier that Friday morning, I'd decided I didn't feel like going shopping on Saturday and maybe I'd wait until the next week. That decision was taken out of my hands.

But now I have a problem--my glasses are in two pieces, and while I could drive home without them, I would really be nervous doing it. I used to carry my sunglasses with me, but I'd taken them out of my tote months ago. I also did a check of my desk and my purse for a spare pair of contact lenses, but of course, I came up empty.

This was boarding on emergency territory, but I work with engineers and they like to fix things. I put the problem to them. The first fix involved a large paperclip unfolded and tape. It was devised by an avionics engineer, but even 45 minutes later, it was starting to come undone. One of my structures engineers came in and I put the problem to him. He came up with a fix that involved safety wire wrapped around both pieces of the glasses. It worked.

(In fact, it worked so well that I continued to wear them for the 12 days it took for my new glasses to arrive. Sure, things were getting a little loose and shaky toward the end, but it was better than trying to wear my sunglasses in the office.)

So Saturday morning, I headed out to get new glasses armed with a 2 for $99 coupon and my mom to help me decide on the right frame. My dad also came along as well.

It quickly became clear that my mom was going to be no help on choosing one new frame, let alone two pairs. Every time I tried one on and asked, "What do you think?" she'd say, "I don't know if it's because I'm used to you in the others..." Not helpful.

Finally, desperate for a little guidance, I turned to the young man working at the optical place. How are you at knowing whether or not frames look good on someone? I asked. As it turned out, he wasn't bad at all, and with him helping me, I chose my two frames.

Yes, I did buy two pairs. Why? Well, not only did I have the coupon, but I'd found myself in a jam when my glasses broke. The previous pair before this one had broken as well and that meant my next newest pair was years and years out of date. For a really long time, I only wore contact lenses and only had my glasses on while they were being cleaned, so I didn't bother buying glasses for that stretch. A cost-saving measure I've come to regret. So not only did wearing those old glasses mean I would see as well, it also meant dealing with enormous frames. When was the last time big frames were in style? That's how old those glasses are.

Of course, the two pairs didn't end up being $99. It was more like 2 for $190. I went with the ultra light lenses--tack on $40 per pair--and one of the frames I picked wasn't on sale. Add $30 more, plus tax. Sigh. But if one pair breaks, at least now I'll have a backup while I wait for new ones.

The saga doesn't end here. There was a rush put on the glasses and I was promised it would take about a week. The week came and went. No call.

Finally, on Day 11 after ordering (12 days after breaking), I was told my glasses were in Minneapolis, but there was a problem with them and they had to be sent to the lab to be reground. I about cried. I was promised I would have them the next day.

At this point, I was like I'll believe it when I see it, but it was true. My rush glasses arrived in 12 days (13 after breaking). I like one of the pairs a lot better than the other so I've only worn the one. They look really cool and hip. Maybe if I wear them long enough, some of that hipness will transfer over to me. I can hope, right?