So I went to the eye doctor last month. I knew my eyesight had deteriorated (further) over the last year, which is to be expected when you get old and start wearing glasses and your eyes realize they don’t have to work as hard as they used to. It’s like when I (tried to) learn how to drive on a manual transmission, and then when I finally drove an automatic, I thought, “Why would anyone want to drive a stick? This is ridiculously so much easier!” (By the way, I still can’t drive a stick. I know how to drive a stick. I’ve just never managed to actually drive one–and I haven’t been interested in practicing since my parents bought their first car with automatic transmission, when I was 18. I’m digressing. I’ll stop. Put it in reverse, as it were.) As soon as I broke down and got reading glasses, my eyes thought, “Good grief, why would anyone not wear glasses? This is awesome!” And my eyes have been going downhill ever since.

Where was I? Oh, yes. Historically, up until now, I have had excellent distance vision. I only need to wear glasses for close work. I don’t need them to watch TV. I don’t need them to drive. When I start needing them for driving, I’m probably going to have to learn to drive all over again because glasses really mess with your peripheral vision. Anyway. I noticed with my last prescription that I was basically using my right eye to see up close and my left eye to see far away. I didn’t need my glasses for distance vision, but when I wore them, my vision was improved all around. There was no ignoring that. Since I didn’t need to wear them all the time, though, I chose not to wear them all the time, because as much of a pain as it was to take them on and off, it was more of a pain to have them on all the time and have them constantly sliding off, which they tended to do a lot. I seriously thought about getting one of those old-lady-librarian chains for them. (And by “seriously,” I mean I knew I never would but I still thought it would be really convenient if I did.) Plus there was the driving thing.

Anyway. Nearly 400 words later I’m almost at my point. This last visit with the eye doctor, it became clear that I was in that awkward stage between needing single-vision eyeglasses and needing bifocals/progressives. I have not been particularly eager to start wearing progressives because they sound like a pain. And then there’s the driving thing. Plus, I can still see without my glasses. I don’t wear them most of the time. So I figured I could get away with one more single-vision prescription, and next year I would probably have to start wearing progressives. I mean, my doctor and I sort of came to that conclusion together. At least it seemed that way. My eye doctor, thankfully, is not one of those medical professionals who empower their patients so much that you come out of there with no idea what their professional medical opinion is. So he gave me another single-vision prescription, and last week I finally got around to filling it.

Actually, I tried to fill it the week before, but the Lenscrafters, which is supposed to get you quality eyeglasses in about an hour, had to special-order my lenses, so it ended up being quality eyeglasses in about ten days. But that’s another thing.

I got new frames this time, too, since the old ones, which I loved, were getting too old. The new frames are quite different. They’re more Tina Fey than Sarah Palin. (My husband helped me pick them out, so I have to use his sexy-librarian scale.) They also stay on my face better, I’ve noticed, so that’s a huge improvement. The new lenses, on the other hand, I am not appreciating so much. Near vision is certainly improved. Distance vision, on the other hand, is completely out the window. Which is to be expected when you increase the…whatever you do to improve near vision. Maybe one of you gentle readers is an optometrist or an optometry hobbyist and can help me out here. My doctor warned me about this, in any case. I guess I just didn’t realize that once I put on my new glasses, I would literally not be able to see anything clearly beyond six feet. It is incredibly annoying. Talk about taking your glasses on and off. I put them on to see something close, and then I look up to see something not actually that far away, but it’s blurry and so I have to take off my glasses when I look up, but since I was just wearing my glasses everything is blurry and I have to wait for my eyes to readjust before I can see something (relatively) clearly six feet away.

I’m thinking maybe I should have sprung for the stupid progressives this year. Or maybe I just need to get used to these new glasses. When I first put them on, my depth perception was all screwy. That’s started to improve. Or maybe that just means my eyesight has descended to the level of my prescription. Whatever. It’s troubling, in any case.

However, I look awesome in these frames, which is good since I’m stuck with them for two years before I get a new frame allowance.

There’s a smudge in front of my left eye right now, and it’s really bugging me, but I’m too lazy to get up and fetch my microfiber cloth. I wonder if looking through the smudge is hurting my eye. Ha ha. (Maybe it is.)

Speaking of glasses and reading, and not needing glasses to watch TV, I recently finished the second season of Downton Abbey, a show I had only been vaguely interested in starting, but once I started I couldn’t stop. And now there’s nothing left of it, until season 3 becomes available in the U.S. I guess in England they don’t say “season 3,” they say “series 3” or something, but I’m not English, nor am I the sort of person who pretends to be English, except that I sometimes spell gray “grey” and theater “theatre.” (Doesn’t “theatre” just look more theatrical? Doesn’t “grey” look more, well, grey?) Where was I? Oh, right. Downton Abbey. Crap, I love that show. I haven’t watched the trailer for the new season (or series–the new bunch of episodes, whatever they’re called) because I don’t want spoilers and also I can’t seem to find it. (A combination of poor Googling skills and an aversion to spoilers.)

In the meantime, I’m getting these Facebook ads that say, “Love Downton Abbey? Read this book!” and it’s some romance novel about the naughty magistrate or something. I don’t know. I don’t remember. I mean, I’m not going to pretend I didn’t look at it. I did. It just didn’t seem like my cuppa. It also didn’t seem very Downton-y. I don’t think it was even the same time period. (I mean, Victorian, Edwardian–it matters! Actually, it probably doesn’t, to me, but still, it’s the principle.) But I figured, you know, librarians and book publishers have to be cashing in on this Downton Abbey craze, so there’s got to be a list of better recommendations out there. So my inferior Googling skills have led me to some interesting places. Turns out there’s a lot of Downton Abbey-inspired reading lists, but they’re all basically the same list, which is disappointing, considering how many books are out there. Come on!

I’ve also discovered, over the course of my inadequate Googling, the Downton Abbey fanfic archives. I’m not really interested in Downton Abbey fan fiction–not because I’m above fan fiction because I’m not. I’ve read more X-Files fan fiction than I care to admit to. (Shut up, some of it is good!) But, you know, I have my limits. I loved Buffy the Vampire Slayer, but I didn’t read Buffy fanfic. I love Jane Austen, but I’m not going to read Austen fanfic. That would be lame. Not that I’m not lame, but as I said, I have my limits. That I discovered Downton Abbey fanfic was not surprising. There’s fan fiction for The Golden Girls. If you can think of it, there’s fanfic for it. What surprised me was that there was so much slashfic, and most of it femslash. I guess that shouldn’t be surprising. But seriously, every lesbian combination of Downton Abbey characters you can think of–I admit that a couple surprised me. (Maybe more than a couple.) Well, of course I read it. I’m just kidding, I didn’t really. But I had you going there, didn’t I? No, I opted instead for a cheap Kindle download of a book about English aristocrat characters that couldn’t be ruined for me. (You know how I am.)

Well, I have to take my kids to see Finding Nemo. I’ve never seen Nemo in the theater–or the theatre (or the cinema, or whatever the English call it)–so I’m very excited because it’s one of my favorite movies ever. (Incidentally, I have never read any Nemo fan fiction either. I just thought I should make that clear. Nor have I Googled reading lists for books similar to Finding Nemo. I don’t have some weird fish thing. I just like the movie. And I will only be wearing 3-D glasses when I see it.)

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