When I was much younger, I wore eyeglasses and contacts. When I was younger than that, I wore eyeglasses. When I was younger still, I didn't wear anything but ZZ Top's favorite: cheap sunglasses. It was after an eye infection while I was overseas in the summer after high school that I realized I couldn't see what I was sure I had seen clearly before. So, in my freshman year of university, I got checked and can still recall the doc saying "Oh yeah. You need glasses."
I suppose I could dig through all the pictures of my growing up and find most of the glasses I've ever worn. Plastic frames, mostly metal frames and finally the excellent titanium frames which were the last glasses I had before I got the wonderful LASIK surgery. But I really don't wish to revisit the history of my glasses. I got my eyes sliced because I, as a charter member of the Big Guy's Club, sweat at just about any outdoor activity. It would drive me buggy to be mowing the lawn and have to wipe my glasses every five minutes. Now, I can sweat with a certain impunity. Uck. That's pretty ugly. Forget I said it.
Not only that, I can indulge my foolish desire for way-too expensive sunglasses. My first pair of Oakley's (grey market from Costco!) made me an Oakley devotee almost immediately. I now own two pair of Oakleys that are in the regular mix, a new pair of Maui Jim polarized glasses (Lycurgus insists that polarized lenses are just the thing for boating in Florida), and a pair of Gargoyles that never really settled into the rotation. So now I can at least look cool on a portion of my face.
What does this have to do with getting old? Well, first, it's cruising the blogosphere. I find I pretty regularly have to bump up the text size on sites I read. It bothers me though it's probably not such a big deal but it seems a symptom. I recall going into the kitchen for breakfast at my parents' home and my father pointing out a rabbit on the lawn, I had to squint to see it which amused dad just a wee bit more than was really necessary. But I got a bit of my own back when he had to ask me to read stock listings in the agate type those pages use to get hundreds of listings into the minimum space. Ha. At least I could read those.
Could. I said "could." I can still read them but I need a pretty good source of light to do so. And one rough contemporary of mine who never needed glasses now needs to use reading glasses as a matter of course. I wish I could have those dew-fresh eyes that didn't need glasses for distance and could read itty-bitty type without batting (yes) an eyelid. But at least when I get all codgered-up, I will be wearing Oakley M-Frame Pros instead of the massive, over-glasses dark goggles that the retirees seem to have adopted as of today. Plant me in the ground with my Oakleys. Perhaps they'll help dim the flames of perdition.