Chick Wit Classic: Focused

By Lisa Scottoline

I’m trying to understand why I have six different pairs of eyeglasses. I’m only one woman, with two nearsighted eyes.

I realized this odd state of affairs when I decided that I would finally replace my glasses, which were crooked because I had put them on the bedside table one night and didn’t reach far enough, so they fell to the floor. I was too tired to pick them up and figured I’d get them in the morning, which I did.

With my foot.

I specialize in ruining glasses. I sit on them, drop them face down, set thick books on them, and put them in the case wrong, snapping off a stem. Freud would say I don’t like wearing glasses.

Guy’s a genius.

Anyway I wore my broken glasses for a week, but I got tired of looking drunk, so I bought a new pair. We won’t talk about how much they cost, because now you need a second mortgage to buy glasses, which is why I never throw any away, but that’s not my point.

My point is that now I own a new pair of normal glasses, a pair of ancient prescription sunglasses I use for the beach and yard work, a pair of semi-ancient prescription sunglasses I use for driving and everything else, a pair of non-prescription sunglasses, and a pair of wacky zany kooky reading glasses, which is either the mark of a true eccentric or a middle-aged woman.

Or both.

My wacky zany kooky readers look like spin art on the boardwalk, in fuchsia and turquoise with weird swirls of gold. I’ve found that even the most conservative woman will wear wacky zany kooky readers. In fact, the more conservative the woman, the wackier the readers. Secretly, I think we’re all sending the same message, which is:

I’m not dead yet.

I’m letting my freak flag fly.

Also you’re not the boss of me.

Yay, us!

Anyway, to stay on point, how can I have so many glasses? Every time I go anywhere, my purse is full of glasses cases. And the craziest part?

I also have contacts.

I got contacts in the sixth grade, after somebody told me, “Men don’t make passes at girls who wear glasses.”


Back then, contact lenses were made of actual glass, so you had to get used to them by wearing them for a month, blinking and tearing, in continuous eye pain. I never really got used to them, so you could tell I was wearing contacts by the tentative backward tilt to my head as I walked, like someone crossing a rickety rope bridge in the Amazon.

Plus the glass contacts were always popping out of my eyes, and everybody in the vicinity would end up on all fours, picking through the rug. The only good part was that I learned to shoot them out of my eyes for fun, by pressing down on the side of the lens, playing corneal tiddlywinks.

Sorry, only people old enough to remember glass contacts will get the tiddlywinks reference. All others, please humor me.

Anyway, it was a lot of trouble to go through for men to make passes, and then Thing One and Thing Two happened, so what does that tell you?

But now it turns out that contacts and glasses aren’t good enough, because there’s a new goop that women can put on their eyelids if they have “inadequate lashes.”


The ads say, “It’s your own eyelashes – only better.”

Thank God my eyelashes can be better. I had no idea they were underachieving. I have slacker eyelashes.

The ad also says you can “grow your own lashes!”

This is a novel idea. I grow my own tomatoes. I grow my own basil. I never thought of growing my own body parts, for limbs and appendages that weren’t up to snuff.

Given my druthers, I’d bypass the lashes and grow more boobs.

I bet men would make passes at me, then. Even if I wore glasses.

I smell Thing Three.

But if you ask me, this eye business has gotten out of hand.

First glasses weren’t good enough, so I got contacts. Now my eyes aren’t good enough.

So will I buy this eyelash goop?

No. I’m older and wiser, and I draw the line.

And I don’t mean eyeliner.

Fool me once, shame on me. Fool me twice?

Okay, that happens.

But three times?


I have plenty of glasses, contacts, and eyelashes, thank you.

I can see clearly now.

My vision is, finally, perfect.

Copyright Lisa Scottoline