In all honesty, I knew that eventually I would end up here. I mean, it happens to everyone they say, at some stage. It just depends on whether you give in to the signs and do something about it, or ignore it completely and live in the blur that you pretend is reality.
So. Here I am I am looking at racks and racks of wire and plastic and marvelling at the options. Bling or no bling? Trendy or conservative? Make a statement and go with purple semi framed, or smoulder in understated class that always accompanies tortoiseshell brown and gold.
It would help if I could see.
I know. I have been putting it off. It happened quite fast and at first, I could find excuses – something in my eye, the light was bad, it was the wrong time of day, the moon was in Jupiter instead of Saturn… but of course eventually I had to cave. The defining moment? When I had to get up out of my chair at the restaurant and walk over to the bar on the pretext of reading the blackboard specials because I couldn’t read the menu. Enough was enough.
So here I am.
When the skipper came out of denial and accepted that he may need some type of assistance in reading the newspaper- assistance that didn’t involve holding it 2 meters away from his face with his toes – I chose his frames within a few minutes. I could tell the shape and colour that would suit his face, and they look great. When geek boy, who needed seeing eye dogs by the time he was 10, was in this position, I had him framed and spectacled within minutes – again, trendy specs that look kewl.
Who’s here to help me and give me an opinion? Not a bloody soul, that’s who. I look around hopefully, but apart from the staff and harassed looking mother with an out of control toddler on the loose, no one looked like they would care what type of frames I chose. At reception, a woman with tattooed eyebrows and purple spikes offers a second opinion. She is adorned with trendy frames that look great and suit the eyebrow/spike combination. I, on the other hand, display neither tattoo nor spikes. When the mumsy blonde with plain janes also chimes in and offers a third opinion, I nearly leap on her and drag her to the display rack. I am distinctly more mumsy than spike.
Holysnappingbatshit, who knew.
It’s veritable who’s who of the catwalk. Guess, Fendi, Elle, Prada. Nike, St Laurent, Dolce & Gabanna. Dior. Oroton. Kelvin Klein. Armani.
Then there is the colour. The shape. The size. Arm height. Bridge design. Red? Blue? Silver? Black? Irridescent? Pearlescent? Opalescent? Round? Square? Oval? Tilted? Long? Short? Nose lugs? Etched and plain and laced and shiny and matt and understated and overstated and tinted or polarised and low slung and high rise and titanium and lithium and kryptonite and would you like fries with that?
Blimey. I just want to be able to read a menu, get lost in my book at night and remove splinters from small fingers without stabbing the kid in the eye by mistake – or worse, spend 10 minutes trying to remove a freckle from my son’s butt which I swear is a tick because I can’t see.
I could buy a degree for less money than it takes to buy the frames.
But pride wins. A consolation prize of sorts. (I am being consoled by spending, yes?) I choose the frame I like sort of bestish – a middle ground choice that sits somewhere between ‘lookamelokkamelookameee Kimmy’ and ‘I am a distant relative of Nana Maskouri’ .
Then I look at the price. Close my eyes, and pay up.
I can’t afford a Fendi handbag, but I’ll take the frames. Thanks.