Legends from our own lunchtimes

Thursday, April 10, 2008


There was a time when one of my eyes failed to function it's fair to say, in the manner to which I had become very accustomed. It's also reasonable to remark that said eye actually didn't do anything much at all for quite a few months, except fill what would otherwise have been a very unattractive hole in my scone.

It was perhaps a less than pleasant sight for those who happened upon it, as it simply sat there motionless, ignoring any pleading from my brain, staring into space apparently unaware that the other eye was moving in a completely different direction, although the lack of glamour was undoubtedly offset somewhat by the propensity for a stream of dribble to appear from the somewhat lower than usual side of my mouth with almost no provocation.

This got to be so constant, that I took to wearing shirts with vertical stripes so the dribble wouldn't be quite so obvious.

It wasn't so much that people were distressed by all of this, although it was true that whenever I travelled on the train, young ladies would give up their seats for me, and as soon as I had availed myself of their offer, the person sitting next to me would also spring to attention, leaving me with two seats for the entire journey, but more that I felt it had a better chance of recovery if I kept it protected from the elements, that I began to wear "the patch".

Without it, I was treated as though I had something incurable and highly contageous. It was clear that the absence of a working eye and a mouth which would to respond to normal telepathic commands had left me categorized by many as a substantial danger to the community.

The patch turned that around, I became a swashbuckling object of desire (or at least of greater desire than without it) whenever I donned it. Instead of crossing the street when they saw me walking towards them, people would stop and ask if I had something wrong with my eye. I would usually respond happily with "No, it's a bit of a chick magnet really", and walk on.

There are many who have made detailed observations of human behaviour towards disabled people in the past, and it was indeed interesting to discover first hand the different standards of socially acceptable and unacceptable appearance, whilst under the spell of the one affliction.

Although I am a bit miffed that I was never given my due at the Cinema. Each week I'd arrive at the ticket box with my patch in place, and ask for a discount because I could only see half as much as everyone else.

Not once did I get that discount, or even a coupon for trying.

I did get a smile once though.



freefalling said...

Did the horizontal stripes work?
My husband has eyes that operate independently of one another (I ramble on about it here if you're interested - http://tinyurl.com/4pt6o8).
I tried to make him wear a patch but he won't be in it.
Are you aware there was a very sexy character on Days of Our Lives (or one of those) whose name was Patch?

bitingmidge said...

Didn't know about Patch, and it's just as well I suppose.

Actually the stripes were vertical and they sort of didn't do a thing. If they'd been horizontal, I guess I would have ended up with a chequered shirt!

Blogger Template Created by pipdig