Thursday, March 16, 2006


I was supposed to go to the eye doctor and pick up my contacts today. I also had an appointment downtown to get fingerprinted (as someone who works with kids, it's a requirement of my job.)

But when I got to the eye doctor, I found out two things- One, for some reason my insurance, while it covers glasses, does not cover contact lenses. Which seems odd to me, because, in my case, contact lenses are actually cheaper. We're talking, around half the price of glasses. WTF, VisionCare?

I may be a special case, however- my prescription is so bad that when I buy glasses, I need to use thick frames, and the material for the lenses has to be a particular kind with special treatments to the glass to make it lighter and glare-proof- because I am prone to migraines and sinus infections. Fun!

With contacts, they're not only more aesthetically pleasing, but they're rigid lenses, so they keep my eyes in shape, which seems to prevent much degeneration of my sight from year to year. Which is a big deal, if (like me) you're blind as a bat. But without the benefit of the radar/sonar/whatever skills that those little winged beasties posess. So, if I ever become blinder than the proverbial bat, I'm basically screwed.

Anyway, I had no idea that contacts weren't covered, so I owe the eye doc an extra hundred bucks or so. D'oh! I am considering going back and ordering a new pair of specs, in that case, just to get my money's worth outta the damn cheap-ass sea bass insurance people. (Did I mention that it's VisionCare? Because they Care about my Vision, supposedly.

So, I tried the contacts on, and they don't fit properly- they have to switch them out. So I left empty-handed. Although, fun fact: contact technology has changed since I started wearing the damn things (twenty years ago!)

You put 'em into cool little holders that look suspiciously like an egg timer- one lens goes in each side, in its own little claw-like receptacle. Seriously, I was enthralled.

So I was narrating my excitement about "the claw storage method" and my optometrist interrupted me.

"Actually, they don't call it a claw. It's called a TULIP."

This is when I started laughing uncontrollably, because- I can just hear the marketing guys now:

"Well, my first reaction is to call it a claw."

"Yes, but "claw" isn't really a positive word is it? Too threatening."

"Ok- what about tulip?"

"Wooden shoes....windmills...buxom women with flaxen braids.....that's a winner. Start printing the promo materials!!"

Seriously, it's a claw, people. It looks like a little lego hand, or a kung-fu grip. It may look like a tulip to someone, somewhere, but I'm not willing to smoke enough crack to get to that point.

What, aren't you guys fascinated by contact lens cases?

OK. Then, when I went to my finger-printing appointment this afternoon- well, it was an experience. I hate, HATE driving in downtown, and if the Fresno Schools people had heard the language I was using, they definitely wouldn't allow me in any position of authority over children. Or farm animals, for that matter.

There was no parking, and it was rush hour, and I was downtown, where kamikaze driving is like a team sport, and hello, there is NO parking. (Yes, I needed to mention that twice.) I tried to call the gentleman who set up the appointment. No answer. I circled the block five times, called twice, and narrowly missed getting bulldozed by a prehistoric truck that decided to steal the spot I was waiting for.

Then I got to drive home in five o' clock traffic. Beeeyotch!

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