Notes From A Walkman Junkie: I Faked The Eye Exam And Got To Play The Mother Of Jesus
Before we are all entirely through with our ample holiday spirit (morbid sadness and disappointment and palpable tension), I thought that I would share a cautionary tale which took place during a holiday season from long ago and involved completely unnecessary eye wear. However, before I get into that business, I want to address the latest of my adventures in car dickery.
Some of you may recall my recent ventures in automobile mishaps and being forced to visit the land of Ogres and Fairies. Well, I once again, had little choice, but to return to the magical car land of shame and over pricing a couple of days ago because, as I explained to the service man on the phone, “My car is starting weird.”
His response to that was, “Oh, it is not starting?” To which I corrected, “No. It starts, but in a really weird way.” I then proceeded to pathetically mimic the sounds of a weird car start before eventually blurting out, “I think your Ogres from Feldagarb fucked up my car.” The car service man disagreed with my harsh vehicle diagnosis, but he agreed that I should bring it in for a look.
Upon my arrival at the dreaded mystical car dealership, the cheery service guys doled out a few of the standard jokes, “Just sign here–that will be one-thousand dollars” and “Oh, a lefty–good thing I brought my special left-handed pen..blah blah har har” and then sent me to the waiting lounge so that they could take turns weirdly starting my car in order to properly assess the problem.
I settled into the waiting area (choosing the seat furthest away form any other humans and the most awkwardly positioned between two plants and a medium-sized inflatable Volkswagen Beetle) and began reading my book. Shortly after I was seated, an older woman came marching in, sat down across from me, and then barked, “YOU, IN THE SCARF. ” I slowly looked up from my book as I happened to be wearing a scarf and if anyone in that room was likely to be addressed by a (most certainly) bat-shit crazy and hostile stranger, it was I.
Once we made eye-contact, the woman aggressively questioned, “HOW DO YOU DO THAT!?” This naturally threw me off a bit and I meekly offered a, “Sorry, what?” as my mind raced with the possible answers (Do what? Read? Breathe? Cry? Was I unconsciously crying? Sit next to ridiculous blow-up toys?). As it happens, she merely wanted to know, “HOW DO YOU DO THAT FANCY LOOP THING WITH YOUR SCARF!?”
This, of course, required my doing a full-on demo, including elaborate verbal instruction in front of her and the various other fucked-car guests in the room before I was permitted to resume my silent reading and waiting in peace. Two to four hours later, the service man approached me, now donning a decidedly frowny face, with zero terrible jokes in sight and told me, “Your car starts weird. It needs a new starter. We need to order one. It will take many days. It will cost a bunch of money. Happy New Year.”
So yes, it has already been a really grand post holiday week and I thank you for allowing me to share my woes with you. Now…where was I? Eye wear. I was reminded of my glasses story over x-mas during a family holiday gathering recently. We were all playing with our new expertly hand-crafted lightsabers gifted to us by my brother and I had, at one point, chosen Rody The Rubber Riding Horse as my battling target and cleanly missed him with my preliminary strike.
This blatant miss obviously prompted the question, “When are you going to get some glasses, Dickhead?” and my thoughts wandered back to the days of my near pathological obsession with glasses. I was in the second grade and desperately longed for a pair of smart specs to wear–convinced that they would make me far more appealing and just a better person in general. My plan was to first subtly plant the “I can’t see things” seed in my mother’s head….tripping and running into things, casually mentioning over lunch, “I can’t make out the fifth to the last ingredient on this Cowboy Six Bean soup can.” It was beans.
When my mother was reasonably convinced of my poor eye-sight, I was able to put the second part of my plan into motion. Fake the eye exam. This was very easily accomplished by just reading aloud a few of the numbers and letters that were clearly visible to me incorrectly and–ta-da! Glasses. My clever plan had worked out flawlessly…except for the fact that my mom picked out the ugliest frames possible and the lenses were really thick (apparently I over-shot a bit with my overly abundant wrong letters and numbers) and made me look all googlie-eyed and I mysteriously landed a really choice role in the school play because the teachers give the best parts to the nerdy/ugly/chubby/socially challenged/glasses-wearing kids that they feel sorry for in an attempt to raise their understandably low self-esteem–but, let’s face it, once you look over and realize that Karl is the other lead in the play with you–the jig is up.
I am attaching a great live version of “Blind” by TV On The Radio for you to enjoy.