Yesterday I was cleaning out one of my junk drawers when I came across an old pair of glasses from back in the early 90s. For some ridiculous reason, I don't seem to have the ability to throw away old glasses. It's almost like I'm clinging on to my past through ancient junk. I also have old watches, old credit cards and old drivers licenses. Maybe I need a 12-step program to rid me of these things. Or a garbage can.
Anyway these were not your typical kind of glasses... these were special glasses. You see, in those days, I was a computer programmer and spent a full 8 hours a day sitting in front of what was known as a "green screen." Here's what that looks like.
After a few months of working as a new programmer, I started coming home from work extremely tired on a regular basis. A physical exam didn't reveal anything unusual so my physician suggested I see my eye doctor about eye fatigue.
Sure enough, my ophthalmologist diagnosed that I needed to wear a slightly different prescription for when I worked in front of this green screen monitor. Oh, and by the way... it would also help considerably if he added a special tint to the lens to counteract all that green that seemed to be burning its way into my retinas.
"And what color will that be?" I asked.
Now, maybe my co-workers were just being polite, or maybe they were huge Elton John fans, but either way - no one said a WORD to me when I showed up the next day wearing pink glasses. God bless them.
For 5 years I wore these in my office. Sometimes I would even forget to take them off and venture out into the factory where hundreds of people were politely not saying anything as well.
Then, the day came for me to move on to my current job. Now, maybe these co-workers were more "transparent" about their feelings or maybe they just had wicked senses of humor, but the very first time I put them on, one of the women who sat in front of me turned around and blurted out, "Bwahahahaha!!! Sweet glasses Jeff!" Suddenly everyone else in the office turned around and started laughing hysterically as well.
I was mortified. It never occurred to me that people might have thought these were odd, or even worse - comically funny.
"Hey, these are prescribed... by a real doctor and everything... no really, I need these... they help with eye fatig..."
It was hopeless. The more I tried to justify my pink glasses the harder they laughed. I felt like a 3rd grade kid being teased by bullies on the playground. I immediately took them off, put them in my drawer, and never wore them again.
Now of course today we all laugh about them together. I should have realized that people don't wear (or probably even need) pink glasses to work on a computer. My eye doctor probably saw an easy sale and decided he could sucker me into them. But there is one thing that remains true... until now that is. I never did wear those pink glasses again - even though my "friends" continue to beg me to do so.
But I consider you much more understanding and sensitive than them.
And so... just for you