"It turns me on to think of growing old." - John Denver
God bless his pointed little head, John may have been on to something in his gee-whiz way. I turned forty-three on Tuesday, and today I went out and picked up my new glasses. Glasses with progressive lenses. Okay, bifocals. I did a lot of moaning about it at the time, and the doctor was very nice and told me that it wasn't any kind of emergency and that I could easily go another year if I wanted to, but the day was coming. Who am I kidding? It's here now. I was holding CD covers up to the light at a certain angle and squinting to make sure I got the right track, I was making vague guesses at serial numbers for warranty forms. The sag of my corneas had begun in earnest.
When I picked up my glasses today, I got a three minute lesson on how to use them. I was instructed to "sit on the couch, read a magazine and watch TV." That was just the kind of hands-on experience I could wrap my head around - maybe even do some full-scale research. When I got home, I started picking up pieces of paper with fine print and practicing on them. I read the ingredients to a Pro-Max bar and found out that they have a gram of trans-fat in them. Maybe I've missed a few "harmful or fatal if swallowed" warnings here and there - thank goodness for that background in stunt-eating.
But what came true at the end of the day was this: I could see again. I've been wearing glasses since I was five years old, and I've been quietly waiting for the day when the lights would go out for good. Not today. Today I read the copyright information off of my son's Star Wars action figures. Not exactly the fountain of youth, but it'll do.