Thursday, March 05, 2015

I Go To An Optician.

A small woman I do not know pushes her knee between my thighs and moves her face closer to mine. I can feel the jets of breath from her nostrils upon my face.

I’m unsure when I have last felt so awkward, unhappy and anxious to be somewhere else.

“Is this any better?” She asks.

It’s really not.

I have not visited an optician in nine years. My existing spectacles have one arm and the lenses routinely fall-out. It has become a Sisyphian task to keep them assembled long enough to watch thirty-minutes of television. Something I rarely do anyway but it’s not the point.

People being close to me, touching me or having their face near mine is not a favourite. My own mother, after the death of her father - my grandfather (obviously) - has recently become a ‘hugger’ after thirty-nine years of perfectly comfortable physical and emotional distance.

That’s bad enough. But this unknown young lady putting her fingers behind my ears and breathing her lunch in my face is intolerable.

“Any better?” She asks again.

I resolve to say ‘yes’ to anything she ever asks so I no longer need to be near her.

“How’s this?”

“How’s this”?  It’s like this : I’m in a distressingly unfamiliar situation, I’m about to be robbed of my routine short-sightedness which has been a source of comfort as I’ve not been able to see anything that may trouble me whilst enjoying the subconscious effect of not being able to see anyone too far away – as a result one’s brain assumes no-one can see you, it’s like having a superpower  - and I’m jittery and just want to be on my own.

I say none of this.

Three days later I have an uncomfortable pair of spectacles for the first time in years.

And realise I am due a haircut. Will this hell ever end?


Anonymous Michelle said...

I feel the same way at the dentist. Just too close. I can't clench my jaw so I clench my fists.

12:23 am  
Blogger Graham Hunt said...

I moved optician about three years ago after one of these sessions worried the b'jesus out of me.

She seemed so nice at the top of the stairs in the daylight. We descended the narrow spiral staircase to the basement and into the torture chamber.

All was ok until she said - "I'm just going to look in your eyes". Pitch black. Something right close to my eye - a blinding light. Then her breath so close I was thinking "I should have trimmed the beard up"... Her legs either side of mine... her thighs touching my thighs. "I just need another few moments"... It hung like something in the air - she didn't need to take so long, be so close, be touching me... I didn't even buy the specs there just took the prescription form and ran for the hills...

And I thought it was only me that had these concerns

3:47 pm  
Anonymous looby said...

It's better from the other side. One of my daughter's eyesight isn't great and watching the 20something optician bend over in a oatmeal wool-ish skirt that came just above...

I think I'll stop now.

7:54 pm  
Blogger Tired Dad said...

Michelle: No, clench your jaw. Make them WORK.

Graham: In my defence I wasn't taken into a DUNGEON as you were. Are you certain it WAS an optician?

Loob: I think it's best for everyone if you do.

9:04 pm  

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