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Monday, May 3, 2021

Sunglasses Are The New Shoes

 Lest anyone become alarmed, (a) I will not be dispensing fashion advice on this blog, and (b) I am not advocating that anyone wear sunglasses on their feet.  

I've maintained for a long time that no article of clothing can make me nearly as miserable as shoes.  Ill-fitting shoes rub blisters and put pressure on the bottoms of feet.  If you're already out walking, you have no recourse as each step becomes increasingly agonizing.  No other article of clothing comes close in my opinion, but I'm starting to think of sunglasses as shoes-lite in terms of the aggravation and discomfort they cause.

I didn't wear sunglasses regularly until the year I spent in Syria (between 2004 and 2005).  I bought an inexpensive pair of sunglasses with wraparound frames to take with me, and I finally understood the hype about sunglasses--it really is more comfortable to not have a strong, unfiltered sun in your eyes!  I wore these sunglasses for years, though they frames were quite rickety even when they were new (I actually had them repaired in Syria because a screw came out).

I tried at some point after returning to the US to get a pair of sunglasses with less rickety frames.  I got a pair, but then found that the arms of the glasses dug into my head and gave me a headache.  I decided to take my chances with the rickety frames.

Several years ago, I had a flexible spending account funds that I needed to use or lose, so I got a pair of prescription sunglasses.  I liked these a lot. The frames were more solid than the pair I took to Syria with me and the glasses were comfortable to wear.  The one problem was that if anything, they were a little loose, always threatening to slide off my nose or the back of my head.  Despite their escape tendencies, I managed to hold on to them until a couple of weeks ago when one of the arms broke.  I'm not sure what caused it to break, but decided it was beyond repair and I would need a new pair.

While I hemmed and hawed over what type of sunglasses to get, I found the old pair I had taken with me to Syria.  The frames are as rickety as ever, and the hinges were getting caught in my hair when I pushed the sunglasses on top of my head.  I hadn't remembered that "feature" of them.  I decided to speed up my search for a new pair.

I splurged a little and ordered a well-known brand of sunglasses on sale.  They have wraparound frames, which I like, and fit very securely to my face, lessening the chance that they'll slid off somewhere.  But, as I discovered while taking a walk on a hot day, they fit so securely that sweat pools around my eyes and doesn't evaporate when I wear them.  It reminded me of trying on a pair of shoes that feels comfortable in the store, but then rubs my feet raw as soon as I wear them out of the house.  I can't really return them at this point, and I feel slightly bamboozled.

I've ordered a cheaper pair of sunglasses with non-wraparound frames.  These won't provide the sun protection for the outer corners of my eyes, but I imagine they will allow enough air circulation for my eye sweat to evaporate.  Much like with shoes, maybe I just can't have it all with my sunglasses.