Nonfiction. Extremely brief thank you's and goodbyes, including an obligatory vision-based anecdote.
|Dec 13, 2020||10||3|
I had an eye exam when I was maybe thirteen. I really wanted glasses, to make me look cool and to make me smarter. That’s how glasses work. Everyone knows that. Plus I got like real bad eye-headaches or whatever.
But, well, cheating on an eye exam is really hard. I’d say it’s actually pretty much impossible to defeat a Phoropter. There’s a lot you have to keep track of, in complex conditions, to construct a consistent and clinically diagnosable/treatable vision problem. If you get everything wrong it’ll be obvious you’re faking, but, if you don’t get enough wrong, or if you get the wrong things wrong, you won’t get glasses, and therefore won’t be able to revitalise your look or improve your marks at school. Or stop the eye-headaches or whatever.
‘Is one better than two?’ the optometrist asked me.
‘Okay, all right, just let me just think a second. I’m going to go with…I think the right answer for me is two. No, shit, one. Lock in one.’
‘And is three or four better?’ they said.
‘Umm. Is two off the table?
My thirteen year old brain simply wasn’t up to the task, so I gave it up. I answered honestly. No more funny business, no more lies, I accepted my spectacleless fate as an ugly idiot. Yet! When it was all over—to my very sincere but sociopathically repressed delight—I was given a prescription. Just a pair of glorified reading glasses, but still. Unbelievable. Lucky me, I thought, imagining a meteoric social/academic rise. Dad paid the bill (sorry) and I wore them out of the store.
I guess they did help me read stuff. And stopped the headaches or whatever. But, looking back, with the well-documented 20/20 vision that hindsight affords, I probably didn’t ever need them. Every small-time, independent optometrist in the world relies on selling people glasses that they don’t really need. It’s like to going to a baker and asking if they reckon you need any bread.
I shall now execute a killer segue and turn deftly to the point.
Hindsight is 20/20, and this has been the calendar year 2020, and I reckon I’m the first person to connect those dots.
What a wild annum, hey? As Mariah Carey slowly takes over our shops and, quickly thereafter, our minds, especially this year, we all feel a natural human urge to reflect. Introspect. Outrospect (?). To review and analyse and blog about the annum that was.
I’m courageously fighting the last of these urges, to save us both some trauma.
But I do need to do a bit of housekeeping. This email will be 2020’s penultimate egg. Next week I’ll just send a little Christmas letter thing I had played on the radio, which I have flogged the everliving shit out of elsewhere, sorry. I will not be doing a new thing every fortnight in 2021, it’ll be probably more like one story a month. This will hopefully save all of us some trauma.
And I just wanted to say thank you, to you, to my dearest and most cherished friend, [insert your name], who will always have a special place in my heart thanks to [insert personally relevant detail/joke/fact/memory]. Seriously, thank you for battling Gmail’s promotions filter, and probably your own interest levels, to read however many of these stories you were able to read. Thanks to everyone who got in touch, or who ‘liked’ a story to give the stats/ego a little boost, or who asked me with grim but (I think?) well-intentioned earnestness if this whole enterprise was ‘still going’. Thanks in general. And all the stories will remain up in the website’s archives for you to peruse at your leisure.
Oh also! Please check out and ideally subscribe (on apple/google) to my podcast: ‘These Stories Are Not Real’. If you like any of the stories on All My Eggs I think you’ll like the podcast. Check out the instagram page here, and the website here.
Good bye and good luck and godspeed and god help us and etc.
I’m leaving you in charge.