Sunday, September 06, 2009

Rose-colored glasses ain't all they're cracked up to be

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


Charli said...

I also seem to remember these same "sensitive" friends drawing pink glasses on EVERYTHING in your office. Picture of a pig, WITH PINK GLASSES, picture of a group of friends they all had PINK GLASSES and on it went for years to come. It also seems to me that is the same group of friends you have been mourning terribly since you moved your office home...

Junk Drawer Kathy said...

I'm sorry, but those are wicked awesome. I think you look fetching in them. You didn't throw them out, did you? Think of the memories! Not good ones, but memories nonetheless.

Elizabeth said...

I think those tinted glasses are back in. I swear I saw Mary-Kate or some other celebrity in them! But if you wanted, you could always donate them to the Lion's Club. They take donated glasses and put them to good use.

Bill said...

I need some rose colored glasses as I watch the economy tank.

Leeuna said...

They aren't really that bad Jeff. Bwahahahaha!! Ahem, sorry....really they're kinda cute...honestly they are.

Heather said...

I think I may have snorted.

Michelle said...

I laughed hard enough that I had to show my husband what was so funny. Sorry.

and hey -- Lions Clubs ALWAYS take old glasses and give them to people who need them. Then again, they may not find anyone for these ;)

And hey - go eat some cheese curds and Sweet Martha's cookies for me? I'm missing out this year and VERY sad.

Ed said...

If it's any consolation, I've seen worse. (Not really, I'm just trying to make you feel better.)

Jeff and Charli Lee said...

charli - I know, they really were masters at latching on to things. We had inside jokes for over 10 years! And you're right, now that I'm working from home, I miss every one of them.

kathy - No, I still have them Kathy. Perhaps you'd like them? I'm quite sure they'd look "fetching" on you too.

elizabeth - So you're suggesting that I start wearing them again and then tell people I'm trying to be like Mary-Kate? Good plan.

bill - Well, now you know where to get them!

leeuna - Funny... that's exactly what they said that day too.

heather - In or out?

michelle - How did you know we were going to the fair tomorrow? I'm going to the "all you can drink" milk booth and drink all I can drink! (sadly that's true, I actually am looking forward to that)

ed - Thanks Ed. That was the best comment I've ever received. (Not really, I'm just trying to... well, you get the picture)

JD at I Do Things said...

I think they're lovely. And maybe there really was something about the pink tint that helped with the green screen?

Geez, it's not like they're real "Elton John" glasses.

Babs-beetle said...

I'm sure when you first got them pink lenses were not that strange. Didn't John Lennon have some? Years later though, they may well have been laughable ;)

Janna said...

As a teenager back in the mid-80's, I had a pair of glasses that were pink AND blue tinted. One color was at the top, the other was at the bottom, and the colors just gradually blended into one another.

I didn't even have a legitimate reason like green screens. I just thought they were cool for some reason.

Can't remember how other people reacted back then, but I shudder at them now.

YOURS look fine, though. :)

MYM said...

lol ... like that seinfeld episode "those are ladies glasses" LOL

omg - that's too funny.

But you wear them well!

Maureen said...

What no rhinestones?????

Hilarious. I still have all my old glasses too...daughter dies looking at them.

United Studies said...

So how is it looking at the world through rose-colored glasses?

Mom Thumb said...

I think they would have been great with your eighties look.

Roger Miller said...

They look hot!

Seriously, I don't see anything wrong with them. Granted I am a dork and I don't always wear "normal" things, but I can't really see the pink.

Maybe I should go see my eye doctor. :)

See how sneaky I was getting out of spelling ophthalmologist, why they use 'ph' instead of 'f' has always bothered me.

Not really.

Shieldmaiden96 said...

You have to wear those with electric boots and a mohair suit. I read it in a magazine.