The Fix-em-Up Plan

By NerdNerd January 30, 2009


Yesterday, I accidentally superglued my glasses to my face. This happened because I'm convinced I can fix anything. When I was 10-years-old, the elastic in my socks wore out, so right before the elementary school band concert, I infamously (but, I argue, ingeniously) stapled the socks to the bottom of my pants. These days, my boots are held together with rubber cement and my bike handlebars are mostly black electrical tape.

I think people throw things away for the dumbest reasons, and snapping my glasses in half was no excuse to spend a bunch of money on a new pair. 

The break in my square-rimmed black-and-green hipster glasses did look pretty gruesome, though. I'm in England right now working on a political reporting project which means I'm on week three of living in bland hotel rooms. Before falling asleep two nights ago, I put my glasses in their usual safe place—on the floor right next to the bed, and then I dropped  Joe Sacco's Safe Area Gorazde (unfortunately, I'm reading the hardcover edition) right on top of them. Crunch.

Being in London complicates any glasses fixing plan due to lack of available resources and the local's incomprehensible accent. Phase one of my glasses fixing plan was to bend the arm of the glasses back into place via applying vice-like pressure with the hotel bed frame. Phase one was an abject failure.

I still had no idea what they called superglue in England. I stumbled around a Central London drugstore for a while before I asked a miserable-looking clerk where it was. "Yew mean lock steaky tack?" he asked. I decided to agree with whatever and, luckily, soon wound up crouched on the curb outside The British Museum pouring Extra Strong Glue into the tiny hinges of my most beloved apparel item.

The irony of fixing broken glasses, of course, is that you must fix them while blind. Superglue and the visually impaired have never been great friends, and the relationship suffered another blow when I put my glasses on to test their strength and discovered that the fix-em-up plan had sort of worked but, sadly, my glasses were now adhered directly to my face. I decided to gauge this as an improvement. Besides, I only had one day free in London, and there was no way I was going to waste time tracking down an optician when the British Museum had an exhibition: Watch Making Through the Centuries.

Shopping for clothes at museums is a guilty pleasure. And in terms of totally amazing shopping experiences, The British Museum gift shop is roughly the equivalent of the New York flagship Macy's. I could not actually try on any of the British Museum's many fantastic t-shirt offerings—like the exact pen-and-ink replica of the Rosetta Stone—because I was nervous about struggling to fit them over my glasses, still permanently affixed to my head. But I bought three shirts anyway, including the one featuring the Rosetta stone. While handing over 50 pounds at the register, I realized, yes, that's about exactly what new frames would have cost me. 

The glasses came off under the hot water of a shower.   

Be sure to read NerdNerd's previous installment here.

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