As I slide at break-neck speed down the slippery slope of life towards the age of 50, I can’t help but notice that things are starting to change. For instance, there are pills and creams in my bathroom cabinet now. Vitamins, skin creams, herbs. Even emergency gout medicine. All undeniable signs of my increasing seniority, along with the grunting noise I have started to make every time I get into or out of a comfy chair.
The most inconvenient of all the ageing signs so far though is that my once perfect eyesight now requires correction by a pair of minus 0.75 glasses. I didn’t realise I needed glasses at all until someone remarked that it was amazing that at my age I didn’t yet wear them. In response I jokingly threw on a pair belonging to a friend and was amazed when I saw that the whole world is not actually slightly blurred after arm’s length at all. Of course I actually knew that, but I guess my eyes had been getting worse so slowly that I got used to the slight blurriness and accepted it as normal.
I have been wearing my “spectacles” for about three weeks now and I just can’t get used to it. I need to take them off to read and put them on again to see anything further away, and I manage to lose them at some point in the process almost every time. They seem to move around the house at will and pop up in places I don’t remember going, and when I finally find them they always need cleaning. People say I should get “bifocals” so I don’t need to take them off all the time, but I will resist doing so until my dying breath because they sound like something a senior citizen would have worn in 17th century England along with a codpiece and a ruff.
Having now experienced driving with my glasses, I can’t believe that I am still alive after so many years of driving without them and, perhaps more importantly, that I haven’t killed anyone else either (not that I saw anyway). There should definitely be mandatory annual eye tests for every person over 40 who wants to drive. How many people are driving around just like I was, unaware of what they can’t see? There are definitely millions of unsuspecting invisible pedestrians all over the world in great peril from an omnipresent Mr Magoo, especially at night.
But the most annoying part comes when I ride my motorbike. I have lost count of how many times I have walked up to the bike, take off my glasses and placed them on the seat, put on my helmet, and then forgotten all about the glasses before swinging my leg over the bike and crashing down on them, ass first with my full body weight. So far my original pair has been flexible enough to survive, but I think I will be spending a lot more money on glasses before I lay eyes on the great optometrist in the sky.