It is difficult to imagine the challenges that people with impaired vision wearing prescription glasses,specially the short sighted ones, go through .While generally it is believed that glasses are sign of erudition and intellectual bent of mind, they actually have pretty high maintenance quotient.

There  are quite a few things I imagine people could do much better had they been blessed with  6/6 vision. These days ,things are better what with laser technology and best quality contact lenses. However my growing up years  were hardly so . Being short sighted myself and having to bear the burden on my nose since third  grade,  here are a few experiences that will make some “glass less” folks empathize with our breed better.

  • Watching 3D movies – Still wondering, where to put the 3D glasses on top of mine with only one set of ears? May be some extra slot should be available for next evolution of humans preordained to wear glasses. I do not get my ticket’s worth with this experience.
  • Swimming – Not that I was greatly inclined towards swimming  and not that we had  dozens of opportunities to learn while stepping through grades in missionary schools where good Sisters very subtly used to push the ideas of Lord’s servitude to achieve ultimate salvation, I would have still thought that someday it might be possible. But once you take off glasses, reaching pool itself is a task. Let me also tell you, concept of dimension goes for a toss.

A swimming pool appears to be just a large mass of wiggling blue which is enough to turn off bravest of Aquarians.

  • Cooking – Can’t take the heat in the kitchen. The heat from stove, especially in summers, might make a glass from your spectacles fall off in one of the dishes. Not that it happens to everyone, really depends on how far and how long one has leaned over the pot.

For “myopics”,  culinary efforts are more about  laws of probability than of gastronomy.

  • Getting out of Air Conditioned car in Chennai heat – Condensed moisture fogs the glasses making one immobile and completely blind .An urgent response is required to prevent falling off the street or getting crushed by incoming vehicle.
  • Spousal Blues– Getting up in the morning and trying to guess partner’s mood .Till glasses are on , it cannot be said with certainty  whether s/he is in a bad mood today. Actually saves a lot of trouble, since one can completely play ignorant and go about the chores without any distractions. Ditto with eve teasing folks .

What is the point of making passes at girls/guys without glasses (who need them). Cannot even make out who said what, forget being  embarrassed or bashful about it.

  • Recognition – This is super. Someone knocking at door, hoping to have a warm welcome, only to realize that her face is not ringing any bells for the host, who obviously in a hurry, ran to open with glasses lying somewhere around. Awkward, but people do get used to it.
  • Gym – Not really required to put on glasses except when dealing with trainers. However, they are required in case you are motivated looking at the mirror .I do not get much help .Glasses refuse to stick to where they belong. The dripping sweat pulls them down, and though technically they are still on, not much help is available in vision category. So if you are on for single arm push up, odds are the glasses will slip much earlier than the core has been stabilized.
  • Rains – Same as gyms .But now, there is no hard physical work required to make that happen .Make sure all bags are on one shoulder or in one hand, because the other is required to hold your “vision enabler” in place.

Surprisingly, despite all these challenges and much technological advancement, people still use glasses. More than in the past, they are a fashion accessory now. Even who can manage to live without them, want to have at least one pair for a different look (I have three) and style. I think this could be a case of Stockholm Syndrome, where folks get emotionally attached to their tormentor.

Or could it be that after wearing glasses for three decades, taking them off might result in eyes having a maniacal disoriented cross eyed look usually associated with psychopaths?