Friday, August 25, 2006

If things break the right way, I could be wearing a totally cool patch. Like a pirate.

I got contacts like a month and a half ago, right before I flew out to Chicago. When I got back I had the doctor adjust my prescription, and he gave me a pair that was supposed to last me a month. That was five weeks ago. OK.

Here's the thing; I'm a lazy bastard, so I never went and got a new box of the contacts. I put mine in yesterday morning and it felt sort of normal, except the left eye was giving me a little trouble. But it didn't seem like anything out of the ordinary, so I just went to work.

After about two hours, the itchiness turned into some very low level pain, and I took my left contact out. It was partially torn. This was at like 10 am. But everything still seemed manageable, so I did a little research online and found the closest Wal-Mart. I don't like shopping there because of their labor problems, but I figure the contacts aren't made in a sweatshop and they offer really big rebates and stuff. The closest one is in Salem, like 20 minutes away.

At about noon I hopped in the car and head out there, and I found the smallest, most busted looking Wal-Mart you've ever seen. And there's no optometrist inside, so I figured I was screwed. But I decided to take a shot at the pharmacy anyway. While I was waiting for the one guy to come see me, my eye all of a sudden started bugging out. Like searing pain, all at once. I pulled the contact out, and it was completely torn apart. A whole huge side was missing, and presumably its floating behind my eyeball, because I could never find it.

The guy finally came over and I asked if they carry boxes of contact lenses. He said no. OK, where is there an eye place around here that would? He didn't know, because he lives "on the other side of the state." I swear to God he said that. Then he told me to ask the girl at customer service.

So I go over to customer service, and the girl (she was like 16) was ringing up customers, because this was the smallest most busted Wal-Mart ever. I finally get to her and asked where in the area I could get a contact lens prescription filled. Without looking at me, she says "try our pharmacy over there," and points back to where I came from. No, I explained, I talked to the pharmacist and he doesn't have contact lenses there.

She finally stopped and looked at me, and literally recoiled with disgust. This was the first indication I had that my eye at that point looked disgusting. She said to try the CVS up the street, which I knew absolutely wouldn't carry contact lenses. Thanks, I said, and left.

When I get to the car, I removed the other contact lens because walking around with just one was actually worse than nothing at all. Then I pulled down the visor mirror, and my eye looked like Sauron from the Lord of the Rings movie. I have never seen an eye that red and bloodshot in all my life. Wicked gross.

Of course, I went to CVS anyway, and sure enough they didn't have contacts, and suggested I try the mall. But I'm now 50 minutes into a one hour lunch break, and I have a 20-minute drive back to work. So I couldn't go to the mall.

I was forced to head back and wear the prescription sunglasses I keep in my car. Sunglasses in the office. I looked like a total jerk for the rest of the day. One friend helpfully offered to make me an eye patch. Everyone else just laughed at me. Supportive bastards.

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