A Tale of Two Glasses16 May 2012
One of the joys of getting older is deteriorating eyesight. Having been near-sighted all my life, my near vision is now getting worse so that I'm now in effect no-sighted.
I have experienced the joy of bifocals for the past couple of years, and have learned to unconsciously tilt my head to the appropriate angle for looking things near and far. Things in the middle (i.e. somewhat beyond arm's length) are problematic, since they are in the transition zone of the lens and one can only focus on a thin horizontal stripe at one time. That makes it difficult to look at a larger surface, like, say, a computer screen, without constantly bobbing one's head to continually adjust the angle.
But modern optometry has the solution: a separate set of computer glasses focused at the distance between your eyes and the monitor. Voilà! I could see the entire screen at once for the first time in ages! However, every medical wonder has a dark side. Or multiple dark sides. The first is having to keep track of two pairs of glasses. Given that one can only wear one pair at a time on one's face, the other pair is always someplace else, and that someplace else is never the same place where one needs them. (I have an app to ping my iPhone when I've misplaced it. There is no such app to ping my glasses.)
Another new problem is that no matter which pair of glasses I have on, they always feel like the wrong pair. Even when they are the right pair. I was at least smart enough not to order identical frames for both glasses. The computer glasses have a ridge on the temples, so I can always feel with my fingers which pair I have on, because I can't tell just with my eyes.
The third problem is that one has to remember to switch glasses when leaving the computer. (Switching glasses when coming to the computer is easy to remember, since the first thing one notices is "Oh, I cannot see the screen!") One cannot competently perform normal tasks when one can only see items exactly 20 inches from one's face. More than once I've caught myself driving away from the house and realizing only then that I have the wrong glasses and cannot see past the windshield. Not good.
So computer glasses are both a blessing and a curse, and have made my life infinitely more complicated than before.