This I Believe

Mildred - Jackson, Michigan
Entered on March 20, 2007
Age Group: 50 - 65

I believe in equality, that is, in equal quality.

I was not allowed to read when I was growing up. I read books as a teen with my girl friends when I could, but when I got home I was yelled at. You see I had a lazy eye, and we had little money and no insurance. My mom was afraid I would be crossed eyed for life.

I used to sneak library books home on my bike and hide them on the back porch until I could seek them into my bedroom. I would then sit on the edge of the bed and read with the plastic flowered curtains pushed behind my back pretending to be looking out the window.

As soon as I heard anyone’s footsteps at the top of the stairs I would slide my book under the corner of the mattress.

When mom checked in to talk to me, she assumed I was looking out the window. It was hard to keep my face turned away in case my eye acted up.

In school I had to sit in the front of the classroom to read the chalk board where the test questions were for history or math. I ingeniously took the top part of the lens off my binoculars and by concealing it in my hand, could read the board by pretending to be leaning my elbow on the desk as though thinking out the problem.

One day we all got our eyes tested at school for free and my parents bought me my first pair of glasses on a time plan at Millers Jewelry store where the optician had his space. I left with pink pointy glasses that were the style and what a new world!

Needless to say along came prisms which straightened out my eye, and now 40 years later with lasik surgery I am finally free to see again without those glasses.

The money that goes into frames, plastic or metal is minimal, yet we have to pay more for frames than we would a cell phone, radio, or a 13” color tv! It is such a rip off, because there is very little technology involved in making the frames. If they were priced for their actual cost plus normal mark up they would be available to more people who really need them. Instead they attach stars names to them. I have yet to go up and recognize a person’s frames and say, “Wow. You have so & so’s, I’m so impressed!” I know it’s possible to get generic glasses; all the dollar stores have them. How about the optical stores giving us a break? Give us equal value for the money we spend. Don’t overprice them. And for those who can afford and want “designer” frames, let them!