Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Secrets of the Four Eyes Revealed!

My "Four Eyes" post has raised a slew of requests/inquiries:
  • A new profile picture and/or an illustration
  • What's the deal? Near or farsighted?
  • A photograph
  • Details of the selection process
  • Are the glasses ironic?
And in the interest of full, ahem, transparency (does that even qualify as a pun? a bit thin), I'm happy to oblige:

A new profile picture and/or an illustration

Check! Top right. Brand spanking new. (I was getting bored with the old one anyway.)

What's the deal? Near or farsighted?

Drum roll! Farsighted (a term whose meaning was fuzzy to me until I learned that my vision was fuzzy due to it). The glasses are for reading and working on the computer, and I do quite a lot of the latter: by day, as a 9th Level Geek Lord, writing code-sonnets for the teeny bit-monkeys, or peering over coworkers shoulders saying things like "Your byte-vortex is set to autofrag? Of course you're data-dysphoric!"; by night, as a no-holds-barred blogger-reporter, hunched over my laptop-of-fury, pounding out riveting exposés on the decline of the muumuu. (As for the rear view mirror, during the first couple of days, the glasses were a novelty, and I wore them in all sorts of situations where they served no legitimate practical purpose: "I wonder what it's like to wear glasses here. I wonder what it's like to wear glasses here..."*)

A photograph


Do they pass muster? (Do they pass the mustard?)

Details of the selection process

Well shucks, I just grabbed the first pair at hand and said, "I'll take these, please. Any old thing is good by me." Okay, maybe not. (Am I really so predictable? Eesh!) Yes, the selection was carefully weighed. For reasons that are now unclear to me, I had my eye exam in a strip mall in Harahan, and afterward, I wandered through the store thinking "Gaw, there's not a single pair of glasses here I would wear," (the teeny architect-ish rectangle things that are so popular now make my already giant noggin look positively elephantoid), but my long-time four-eyed wife steered me to a vendor with a more sympathetic aesthetic where I found a suitable pair, happily achieving the subtly,-not-excessively,-retro-50s/60s-NASA-engineer-chic I was going for. (Or if you prefer, retro-50s/60s-newsroom-chic.** I've already had more than one comment about looking like I'm about to turn into Superman—which at least means I've got my Halloween costume in the bag.)

Are the glasses ironic?

I like to think not. Though retro can be ironic, I contend that it musn't necessarily be so. (In the Venn diagram, the Retro and Ironic circles would overlap, not coextend.) But maybe I'll get myself a big pair of honkin'-ugly 80s-woodshop-teacher-style specs for when I feel like busting out the retro/ironic big guns. And I'll grow a cheesy mustache to go with them.

That's all for now, but stay tuned for more exhaustively detailed minutiae of my new life with glasses here on Slim's Wild World of Eye Wear!

* Veteran four-eyes-ers all have nuanced, highly developed eyeglass rituals: put the glasses on the bedside table at night, put them on in the morning, wear them while making breakfast, set them next to the toothpaste while showering, in the shirt pocket to work, on for the rest of the morning—only taking them off only to gesture with or absentmindedly chew on—back in the shirt pocket for lunch..." I'm still working all that out.

** Or if you prefer, dork-chic. My students notice even the subtlest stylistic deviation or misstep, and they found the new look hilarious.


  1. Teresa11:46 AM

    First laugh of the day, thank you very much. Not at the glasses themselves (they look quite good, Clark) but at the strip-mall in Harahan reference. Thank goodness your darling wife was there to help.

  2. craic-head2:49 PM

    Mustard passed.

  3. Your new profile photo cracked me up! i love your new glasses.

  4. You look sort of ironically serious in them! In a good way.