Sunday, March 6, 2011

Out of the Closet & Easy

Last week I dragged myself in for my infrequent eye exam.

I arrive to my appointment compulsively early as usual, check in, and walk along the cases of frames.

 A man in a suit greets me and I tell him what I'm looking for.

"I love the glasses I have on now - I think they are awesomely Tina Fey. But I need another look, something different and something that goes with my blondier hair," I tell him while he appraises the shape of my face and nods.

 I continue,  "Ever since I became a blonde my daughter won't let me wear these glasses to pick her up at school. That hurts me. Deeply."

I feign a sniff of imagined indignity

He shakes his head laughing and asks, "You haven't always been a blonde?"

I lean over the counter, make sure no one is listening and whisper, "I just became one about a year ago but I feel like I've come out of the closet, like I've been a blonde all along and everyone knew it but me."

He chokes back a laugh.

They call my name and I tell him I'll be back.

I follow a cheerful pink-scrub wearing ponytailed 20-something.

I tell her I'm not going to enjoy this, and she doesn't care.  I like that about her.

I tell her that I hate putting my chin on anything and staring into a box.

She says she understands.

I tell her I hate being asked (cheerfully, even worse) "Which is better? One?" "Two?" "Again?" "One?" "Two?" 

And she agrees that it gets annoying.

Then I tell that I especially hate having my pupils dilated.

She tells me it's not that bad, that it's much lighter and gentler, and that I'll be fine.

I ask her, "are you going to use a speculum?" but she doesn't answer.

Or laugh.

When she leaves the room with my chart in her hand, I pick up my iPhone and with dilated eyes compose a tweet about that.

I feel better.

Soon enough, it is over, I survive and  am rewarded with a prescription for new lenses that are "a little" stronger.

I return to my gentleman at the frames counter, who thankfully is not detained by someone trying on every frame in the shop.

I've been that person.  The narrative went something like: Nothing looks right, nothing looks good, or if it does look good, it's too expensive so show me something that looks like the one I love and can't have but I'll never be happy with it...has it been two hours? I'm so sorry I just haven't quite found anything, but OH how about those? Oh? I tried them already? *sigh*

He greets me and asks me if I'd please indulge him and try a particular pair of frames he thought might look good.

Of course I try them on.

He's a professional glasses-picker.

I trust him.

They are red. They are hip. They are different. They are perfect.

"Thanks!" I say, take them off and hand them to him. "What do we do now?"

His eyebrows furrow. He doesn't understand.

"They're perfect.  I know what I like, and I like these. Now what?"

He silently exhales all his sales-pitching and coaxing and coaching that he won'tbe doing.

I imagine he also happily pockets the patience I'm not going to drain from him, not today.

I follow him to a chair and stay on my best (translation: QUIETEST) behavior while he writes up the details of the order.

I think he's waiting for me to suddenly change my mind, or to freak out about money or something along those lines. I wonder if our uneventfully quick transaction disappoints him.

We shake hands when I stand up and he doesn't say it, so I do.

"You didn't think I was going to be this easy did you?"   

He shakes his head, laughs and then waves at me as I happily leave the store and go back into the world,  out of the closet and easy.