Dispatches, thoughts, and miscellanea from writer Jon Konrath


It has been a long week, and has involved many views of myself I’d normally not see. First, I had an annual physical, and I guess that view involved an EKG, which is always weird, but was, luckily, fine. I am under 40, so I did not get the pleasure of another little test that won’t be discussed. I did get a bunch of blood tests done, so in a few days, I will get to see another view of myself, in the form of little numbers telling me the range of various chemicals in my blood, which is always a little more interesting than just a glance in the mirror. Nothing strange expected there, although I’m sure my cholestorol is high and that’s always a fun bridge to cross with any doctor, especially one who loves writing prescriptions.

On Friday morning, I woke up three hours early to Blizzard 05 (a couple of inches) and trudged my way to another doctor, this time to look at my eyes and see if I can get LASIK. I had a short battery of interesting tests, including a computerized photo-mapping of my eye, which is a new one for me. I got to see a big color digital picture of my ocular devices, which resembled a view of a sun-like star, but crossed with a couple of blood vessels of some sort. I also got some numbing drops, which are not exactly the fun party game you might expect, and the nurse stuck a very sharp, very tiny probe right into my eye to get a depth of my cornea. Unfortunately, after all of this fun, it turns out I can’t get LASIK, or the also-nifty LASEK or PRK surgeries, because my prescription is too high and my cornea is too thin for all of that slicing and dicing. When they do the correction, they carve down the cornea to get the right shape, and in my case, there’s just not enough to carve. There is a procedure that’s brand new where they implant a tiny sliver of a lens underneath there, and you have a permanent contact lens that never needs cleaning. But this is about twice as expensive, and it’s more of a pain in the ass (or eye, rather), and it’s all too many if if ifs.

So today I went to LensCrafters and ran through another set of tests, this time for plain old glasses. I got more pictures of myself in the form of eye shots, and did a bunch of “this or this.” The doctor, it turns out, is also a graduate of IU, and we roamed the Bloomington campus at the same time. Small world. Big prescription though, and even bigger bill by the time they got those high-index lenses all figured out. Hey, more views of myself, with new frames! I won’t get to see them for a few more weeks, while they hunt down the vintage Coke bottles on e-bay to make my lenses. And then I got a haircut, and I can see my ears!

And that’s about it. I need to go shop for a few more presents online, and spend the last few dollars I have on that. And I’m reading the new David Foster Wallace already, thanks to Marie, who was also thanked inside. So, off to that.