I kept the glasses in the drawer till I started the 9th grade, until one day I went to school in the morning with the glasses tucked into my shirt, and got back home without them, somehow displacing them during the day (yes, displaced, not intentionally left under the desk at school, and don’t even dream of pictures, cause I honestly don’t have any).
Worried that my eyesight will get worse (and against all my I-don’t-want-to-wear-glasses pleading), my mother immediately took me to what I will refer to at the Glasses Shop, where I left with a pair of glasses that were a hundred times worse than the first pair. Thanks to one of my “fashionable” whims and fancies, I left the shop with a perfectly round pair of blue plastic glasses, with dark blue-tinted lenses that were really too really too large for my facial frame. Just look at them (below). HIDEOUS!
They naturally spent most of their life in my drawer, until one day a little later in the 8th grade, my friend Nissy convinced me to start wearing them, at least in class (I guess she was tired of having me look over her notes or something, because she actually went far enough with her attempts to convince me that she wore them for a week!)
Then 9th grade came, and man was that year a good one! I don’t know if it was all the Arabic classes spent huffing white-out or the several times I fell smack on my head in some of the crazy parties we used to have, but that year was definitely happily spent discovering the inner freak in me. My hair went pink, I got enough piercings in my ears to (later) end up with a severe infection, and perfected the art of screaming. More “intense” reminders of that crazy year, such as the bright fuchsia wig which I wore as often as I could, lie lovingly in a drawer- and I have most definitely lost the guts to wear them in public (just ask Hal).
With that change of mentality, I most definitely needed a change of frames, and thus came the fantastic idea of buying red-tinted glasses to make the whole world look red. In fact, the idea was such a great success that my whole world was red for quite a while, thanks to what became my favorite EVER pair of glasses, a pair I often miss and a pair that I am still always trying to find another pair similar to them, 8 years on.
The glasses saw their doom when my cousin Basem, with his uncanny love for accidentally sitting on stuff, sat on them several times in the summer of 2001, breaking them into two perfectly symmetrical pieces. They were probably the only material object that I ever cried over in my life. I still have them in the drawer, broken but tucked carefully beside the pink wig; a reminder of a time when my life revolved around the next party, water spitting contests, and breaking as many things at school as possible.
Ironically enough, I slightly “grew up” around the same time the glasses died. I went back to school after that long summer vacation with a pair of frameless glasses very different from my signature red ones, with my short spikey pink hair replaced with longer (and much duller) streaked blonde, and a much calmer persona. The change was so drastic that the first thing my English teacher told me that first-day of school was “ROBA! What happened? You look so boring!”
Boring. I think I was quite a different person during those last 2 years of highschool from the person I was before and the person I am now, as almost all of my time and energy were poured into trying to graduate with straight A’s, doing well on the SAT’s, Dabkeh, organizing bazaars, and other kinds of more responsible activities. That pair of untinted, clean cut glasses was really the perfect embodiment of the phase I went through, which lasted for about three years, till sometime well into my first year of college here in Jordan.
Sometime then, I decided that I had enough of being boring, and bought a pretty cool pair with a deconstructionist flair that I always got complimented on.
Unfortunately, the closest I got to red frames was the dark maroon “Geek Chic” pair that I wear now, and clear ones with red arms that met their death when I forgot them in my car in the scorching summer sun during the week I spent in Cairo (they melted out of shape). I suppose you could say that I like the maroon frame, as it goes in line with the geeky phase (?) I’m going through these years.
My last pair so far was what has been referred to as the grandmother pair, although I keenly disagree with that description and would rather think that they give off a slightly more geekish flair. I am getting tired of the fact that they are almost the same color as my skin and I’m starting to tremendously crave a bright red pair once more, which brings me to the whole point of this post: does anyone know where I can find a bright red pair of plastic rectangular frames in the smallest big city in the world?
But there you go, a personal history of glasses. I really try to portray my inner feelings with what I choose to wear, and this doesn’t only go for glasses.
I’m craving red. Again.
Whatever that might signify.