Thursday, 29 August 2013

China, the Hairy Dog and my Spectacles

China is always up to something naughty. No, I do not just mean playing hopscotch on our side of the LAC. I speak of more important matters! For instance, last Christmas I bought an air-filled Santa Claus for my son. When the cycle pump did the needful, we all realized how this Santa was indeed Chinese. Then, only this Holi, the Made in China water gun read ‘Holy Hey, I Love India’ on a multi-coloured flag, and I had to dump the incorrect version of the national symbol and language by removing the sticker as soon as was possible. Even the toys at the red lights are getting more expensive, and their lights and jingles hardly lasting more than a day now, when once they sang for a good number of Chinese New Year days. I feel cheated! 

While I was still in my ‘why me?’ mode, I read how a zoo in China went ahead and dressed a Tibetan mastiff in furry brown coat, putting it in the African lion’s cage (which was on breeding leave). Even though the dog did a damn good bark-a-roar, the zoo visitors caught the act and returned home feeling very cheated. The dog lost his job and the zoo its credibility. In the mean time, I gained some comfort in numbers, of those who, like me, believe that China is indeed always up to something naughty.

And then, the spectacles happened. (I cannot entirely blame the ‘Made in China’ tags which I have been obsessively watching out for whenever shopping in malls or Monday markets. But I tell you, I am sure their minuteness had a role to play in giving me my first pair of spectacles.) 

It dropped like a bomb, my eye doctor’s "Number toh ha’, par bahut zara sa. Just wear them while working on the computer, driving or watching TV." The solace of the latter half of his verdict fell on deaf ears, blind eyes and a mind busy with - There go my eyes. It will be downwards from now on. The glasses will get thicker, the eyes smaller. The death of the kajal pencil the reign of soft-cloth-to-wipe-them-thus in times of dal tadka or rainy days. Shades of eye shadow bye-bye and shadows under eyes hello. How will I wear my favourite polka dotted hair band along with my glasses, without crowding the back of my ears? No more use in fluttering of lashes to work my way into my husband’s wallet or that look-in-the-eye which tells my son, stop fussing in public! Hai, I am blind. By .5 and .7 but I am indeed blind, and will only go blinder and then blindest. There’s even a minus there, already.

"Let’s go get you some sexy ones," he chirped gleefully, as if sadistically happy for getting the No Number in My Eyes certificate, after this routine visit to the eye doctor spelled trouble only for me. Three stores and 30 brands later, I had not found a pair that suited my fancy. This was going to take some time, and convincing, he must have mused. So, with carpe diem stamped on his face the next day, he took me to the last-but-only optician central Dehra Dun had to offer. History repeated itself as glasses all shades and shapes went into the rejection box, even as the man behind the counter thought it was inspirational saying "spectacular spectacles" with his lovable pahari accent (and looks) to every piece he pushed towards me.

The 157th one was on my nose when my man said - "This is lovely. You look like what you should – A Writer." There, he had used the W-word, knowing fully-well how this will seal the deal in my head. And it sure did! Two days of unconvincing samples, convincing flattery and eventual emptying of wallet later, I had become the proud owner of my first-ever pair of spectacles.


As they lie harmfully under-used but harmlessly sleeping over the latest-most important news from China, I wonder if my husband had tricked me into buying these by saying the W-word, just like the zoo-keeper in China tricked his people with his version of a lion. What if my readers see through me with my glasses, even as I don these "writerly" ones under all self-delusions of not just looking like a published author but writing like one too? And what if my bark writing is a give-away of how I too, like the dog in the lion’s cage, am just another wannabe with the right paraphernalia but barking in the wrong place and at the wrong time? A lion with a dog’s bark or a dog trying to roar? Worse of all, a dog thinking he is indeed a lion, and daring to write about it too. Phew! 

So much for these ‘spectacular spectacles’ and for my husband’s 6/6 eye sight! They are going back in the box, where they belong. I am not that blind, and certainly not as yet. 

Now, why can’t I see the darned box anywhere? 

55 comments:

  1. Hahahahaha,never mind, next time get round Gandhian ones - which now are known as Harry Potter ones. May be they'll make a wizard out of you

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    1. Oh Lord, I should have known. I wish I had spoken to you before I got these "normal" ones, Ritu. But, made a mental note. And then, even wizard starts with a 'W' - suits my fancy! ;) Thanks!!

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  2. Sakshi you probably are starting to get presbyopia which means as one gets older it gets harder to focus on near objects.
    Very very much later you may get cataracts which would slowly dim your vision. Fortunately the surgery is minor and by the time you get it might practically be an out patient procedure.

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    1. Well, Steve, thank you for that leaf out of the medical books. I know what you are saying, even if I do not want to know it, as yet! :D Thank you for reading, and hoping that I made you smile too apart from bringing out the eye-doctor in you. :P

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  3. Now, why can’t I see the darned box anywhere?
    Sakshi, you are a wizard with the pen! (and paper as well) :D

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    1. Always too kind aren't you, StirYourSouls? Thank you! :)

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    2. It's not that I'm kind. It's that you're actually good with it!

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  4. Seriously that happened in a zoo in China, unbelievable. And i think you will look really cute with spectacles. If you are not using the polka dotted hair band, can I have it :P

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    1. Haha! Yes, you can take the polka-dotted hair band. :D And thank you for encouraging me to wear my spectacles. My husband will be happy that if not him, at least my blogger friend may achieve this feat of convincing me to. :) Thanks for reading, Saru! :)

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  5. What's it with women and glasses? It can't simply be vanity. Heavens, men have more of that!
    It must be the eye shadow then. Won't just going four shades darker or glitterer than normal help? :-D

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    1. Of course it's the eye shadow. I have no money to put any more of those colours and glitter. Today, each lasts me a few years, tomorrow, thanks to my glasses, they will barely last a few months. :O But then, since I only have to wear them at home, I'm thinking I'll try going without wasting make-up skills on my face. :P I do not know this "it" with women and glasses. But I will find out!

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  6. I have always wanted to wear glasses because I didn't really care for passes. But every time I went to the Optometrist, he sent me back with an apologetic smile. But what years of reading the fine print couldn't damage was taken care of by age. And I'm eagerly awaiting my next visit to the Optometrist :-)

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    1. :D Truth be told - I do not mind them as much as this post may convey. Just knowing that the fine print got finer, permanently, feels a little bad. Thanks for stopping by, Purba! It's a strange wish to be making, but hope your visit to the Optometrist happens soon :)

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  7. Wow, I don't even where to start commenting on this post about....China, the dog, the spectacles, so I ll go one by one.

    The news about China and the mastiff playing the lion, priceless find, couldn't quite stop laughing after I read that part of the post

    The news about your vision, quite disturbing, but understandable given that you spend so much time in front of a computer churning out these wonderful posts for your blog, for topyaps, for parentous and God only knows for where else.

    Have to completely agree with your husband there when he says that the spectacles make you look like a writer with a capital W. And am sure at this point you are "a lion who just barks" but am also sure that you will soon learn to roar and I am more than sure the roar will be grand...

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    1. Jairam, do click on the 'read' link and see the pictures. I cannot get over them!

      My going vision is to be blamed on FB and Farmville, which occupied all my sense for a whole year - obsessively! About the writings, well, maybe a part of the problem lies there. I love using pen on paper, but since typing is faster, even that has been relegated to simply making 'to-do' lists for Husband to do. :P

      You know, my husband will disagree with you. I think he says I already know how to roar, and how. :P Thank you for thinking I will be the lion-of-a-writer one day. On that note, I will wear my specs more often :D

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  8. Now, why can’t I see the darned box anywhere? !! Happens to me just all the time! Just stopped by your blog and I have so much reading to do!!

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    1. Good to know you want to read more. What more can I ask for? Thanks, Pratibha. :)

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  9. The phrases have to be reworded now Sakhi! Instead of a 'wolf in sheep's clothing, it is a dog in lion's clothing'! Hilarious one!

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    1. Yes, right you are, Rahul. :) Thanks for reading!

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  10. :) nice way to start my day...had a good laugh in the morning :) was good to read...i have a few "made in china" stuff that i bought for my daughter too!!

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    1. Good to have made you laugh, Preethi. That was the whole point behind the post, and I'm happy its achieved! :D

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  11. Hi,I have been following your blogs for quite sometime now but guess i got lazy to comment.poof!!
    Hilarious post,i have got the same spec no.& not much like the nerdy spectacles.Tried about millions of glasses but now rounded upon a neon eye-wear.Must say they are absolute trendy & looks chic.

    http://sailorswiferamblings.blogspot.com/2013/08/twinkling-trinkets.html

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    1. Thank you for following my blog, and for liking the post. Yes yes, trendy is important, why not! ;) Thanks for reading, Anuymous Dev

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  12. Stop being a drama queen about the spectacles :D! I have been wearing them since I was in second standard. I hated them back then and eagerly bought contacts in college. Now I am so comfortable in them that my contacts lie unused. I don't use eye shadow so my love for spectacles make sense ;-). And I've always had dark circles due to my high cheek bones.

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    1. A little drama is good for my health! :P And ahh, those cheek bones I wish I had. Sigh! Thanks for reading, Rachna! :)

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  13. Arrrrrrrrrrrrrrreeeeeeee I just picked my spexy look about a month back. I have a .25 and .5 too. And I was dying to have them! Makes me look thoda smart. That reminds me, I ought to be wearing them right now......sigh!

    But all said and done, Maid in China you are not! Don't you know we lob you?

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    1. And your lob keeps me ticking with glee, Blogwati Gee. ;) Yes, it's all about being 'spexy' and I am also getting to realise they might just be a good thing if so many women love them! :D

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  14. There is little point in writing unless a writer wears glasses. It's the new trendy look, I heard. And I agree with Vinita, Spexy is cool.

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  15. Specs are good I say. :)
    btw i am reminded of the recent ad, the one with the guy trying out various models to woo a girl.

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    1. Specs are indeed good. I do recall that ad you speak about. The book-shot one, right? Alas! My days of wooing and getting wooed are so far behind. I only have to worry about my son not making a toy out of them! :P Thanks for stopping by, Indrani!

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  16. I think I want specs too .. but then I have huge like really huge eyes so I am worried about the cheesy .. such big eyes and u still ant see sort of comments :)

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    1. :D 'you still aint see' ... :P funny! I guess I will never face such comments.

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    2. can't see .. typo !!!!!!

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    3. Ah! In my part of Delhi, your typo would have done just fine! :P

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  17. Lol.. and I agree with Rachna that specs are not that bad. I have had mine for years. There was a phase when I switched to contact lenses and kept them only as a fallback. But I find lenses too cumbersome to carry and manage, so now they are lying unused as I proudly wear my specs everywhere. :)

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    1. After so many of you saying specs are not that bad, I guess I'll just have to go with the verdict :) Thanks for reading, Priya! :)

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  18. Babes!

    Let me tell you my little story with spectacles. I have -5 and -4.50 in both my eyes. I am blind. And my glasses make me look nowhere near a writer but quite a nerd instead! And my little boy doesn't like me in glasses either. He broke my 10 year old pair last year and forced me to get a new one. I bought, what I thought was a snazzy blue and one that made me look bearable enough. Sigh! My little man doesn't approve of it either. He keeps yanking it out of my face and throwing it away or insists his father goes blind with wearing it!!

    So low power is good. High power is what kills you. And if it gets there at all, switch to lenses! :)

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    1. Oh same-to-same story here too, Ritu. My son is after their life with a jealous vengeance, almost! I have to keep them off when he is around, which is like most of the time. :) I hope I look bearable enough too, though I seriously doubt that. Would have put my own smiling face in the post else! :P Thanks for stopping by!

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  19. I have always had a feelingof irritation and dislike with whatever chinese, but i liked the post though;-)
    Now, why can’t I see the darned box anywhere? This was really called for, special sakshi style....
    Love....

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    1. Yes, yes, the post is certainly not Made in China. ;) Thanks for liking it, Ajiteja. And oh, 'special Sakshi style' sounds very nice to my ears. :D :D

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  20. Hehe..the zoo story and the last line tickled my funny bone Sakshi ..:)

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    1. :D Good to know, Sangeetha. The reflection in my mirror wearing glasses is tickling my funny bone, for now. :P

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  21. Now that was a punch-line that aptly crowned a hilarious post :) This one reminded me of my own experience as captured in my post "Eyes that do not read" :)

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    1. My eyes that can barely read will be reading your "Eyes that do not read". :) Thanks for pointing me to it, and thanks for reading, Suresh!

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  22. I loved the times when I was able to read everything clearly without my glasses... and in the beginning of my glass-ful phase I remember trying my best to forget where I've kept them, almost wishing them away. This was a little game I played with them.

    And now they turn back and play a more sinister game with me... they remain hidden in absolute silence behind piles of books or comfortably wearing a brand new suit of newspaper pages as I frantically search for them.

    So specs do deserve a nice post... nice that you thought of it.

    Arvind Passey
    www.passey.info

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  23. I have always wanted to have glasses and finally when after having a kid I got another gift in form of eye glasses (For computer and tv only though) I was thrilled. Have hunted for the perfect pair and they proudly sit on my nose bridge now. But it was a great read to see the other side of this glassy issue. Great one Sakshi!

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    1. Glad you liked this 'other side' of the glassy issue, Swapna. Thank you so much fro stopping by! :)

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  24. Those are really good stories and great narration style. This is my first time reading your blog and I like it. Will come back for more.

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  25. They look smart but we need to see them perched on your nose, writer sahibaan!! :P

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    1. :D When I do become a 'writer sahibaan' I will post a picture of them perched on my nose in the blurb of the book, I promise! Roshni :D

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