Friday, October 2, 2009

My Life Is A Sitcom

Really. It is.

Case in point? Yesterday afternoon.

Yesterday was a big day for me. I was meeting my fabulous agent Holly Root at a downtown bookstore in the evening. Now, I've already signed on the dotted line, she has full access to this blog, and she's seen my Twitter feed. If she was going to go running in the opposite direction, she's had ample opportunity.

Still. One wants to arrive at the first meeting with one's agent with a basic resemblance to a mostly-normal, fully-functioning humanoid.

I certainly had every intention of A) Not wearing my yoga pants with the gigantic hole in the nether regions and B) Staying away from substances that cause me to be more of a lunatic than usual (caffeine, alcohol, unlimited access to Hot Tamales).

Instead, I woke up with my left eye burning. Burning. Every time I blinked. Every time I didn't blink. Burning.

Not fun.

Also, not conducive to driving. Working. Walking with any sort of depth perception. Given my already shaky hand-eye coordination record, every step I took with my burning, refuses-to-work-right left eye was an act of unmitigated hubris for which I fully expected the universe to slap me into the nearest tree.

Halfway through the day, after countless eye-checks using mirrors, lights, and other people, I realized I couldn't handle it on my own. I would have to *gasp* go to my eye doctor.

I don't like going to my eye doctor. Not that he isn't a very nice man. He is. But he's an eye doctor. He thinks terms like corneal ulcer and retinal detachment are exciting conversational options. I get nauseous at the sound of someone rubbing their eye.

I can deal with puke, blood, and a host of other bodily functions but eyes totally gross me out. Why? Who knows? Remember, I'm the woman who's deathly afraid of moths. Do you really expect my other phobias to make sense?

After performing the sadistic "Hey! Here's a great idea! You sit very still while I shoot air into your open eyeball!" routine, he had me sit in a chair and try to read a tiny little chart of letters positioned approximately five miles away.

This is another sadistic routine. There's no way you can read the bottom line without the help of NASA's Hubble Space telescope. And why would you want to? It doesn't say anything interesting.

After failing to read the bottom line with my air-puffed eyeballs, the doctor had me rest my chin on a metal platform he'd recently pulled out of a freezer and look straight ahead while he scanned my eye with a magnifier.

He found nothing, and that's when the real fun began.

Because he needed a better look at my eye, he announced he would be A) dyeing my eye and B) rolling up my eyelid with a stick.

I informed him that I would not be showing up to my first ever meeting with my literary agent sporting an eye in shades God never intended.

Also, I informed him that the last time an eye doctor rolled my eyelid up with a stick, I nearly vomited on his shoes and if he was wise, he'd cover himself with some plastic.

He laughed, but grabbed the trashcan just in case.

Moments later, he'd dyed my eye a heinous shade of yellow. Not sunshine yellow. Not lemon yellow. Radioactive urine yellow.

And then he rolled my eyelid up with a stick.

Yes, dear reader, I gagged. Out loud.

He made several oohs and ahhs and then announced he'd found some sort of lesion on my eye. It had an official name but it was so nasty sounding, I promptly repressed my knowledge of it as soon as it left his mouth.

He then said he wanted to roll up my other eyelid for comparison. Um ... hello? Gagging? Retching? Really?

He was most insistent. He grabbed my eyelid, wrapped it around his little stick of torture, and it snapped back into place.

He thought that was sort of funny. I threatened to kick him in the shins.

He managed to roll it up correctly the next time *cue gagging* and then rhapsodized on and on about this, that, and the "Do I seriously care?!" for a few seconds until my feet starting swinging in the general direction of his legs.

Seemingly unaware that a girl who nearly vomits when her eye is examined might not be interested in a host of visual aids detailing the nasty lesion on her eye, he began discussing my condition with what I can only term indecent enthusiasm. He even googled it to show me enlarged images.

I refused to look.

Seeing that I was shockingly uninterested in revisiting the contents of my stomach, he told me the lesion would heal in 48-72 hours and I should put tears in my eyes (from a bottle, not from banging my finger with a hammer) every two hours. And then said I was free to go.

Wait, what? I'm meeting with literary agent in three hours. I have an eyeball that looks like radioactive urine. I. Don't. Think. So.

Of course, the only way to get rid of my radioactive eye was to flush it. I responded to this delightful procedure in much the same way as the eyelid rolling only with considerable more dialogue. None of which, I'm afraid, is fit to print.

In the end, I had two normal looking eyeballs again. And my eye doctor got his afternoon torture fix.

I wonder if I can just count that as my yearly exam and be done with it?


  1. Why is it always when we have something important to do something like this happens?

    I can definitely relate. Last summer when I was about to go on vacation. My first vacation in two years I caught Swine Flu from a fiend, er friend. She'd been in the hospital for it and after she was discharged decided to just spread it every. So besides myself four of my other friends were also infected.

    I'm glad your eye bug thing worked out for you.

  2. Sooooo, am I to understand that the meeting with Holly itself went well? :D

  3. I remember being able to read the bottom line of the letter chart when I was itsy-bitsy. Now I can't see two feet in front of my face.

  4. I literally did laugh out loud at your eye doctor visit..... sorry to delight and enjoy your pain. I am only laughing because I feel an eye doctor appointment is in the near future for me and anything involving a throw up pail is going to make me chuckle. Glad your eyes are both white again. :O)

  5. "Yes, dear reader, I gagged."


  6. My eyelid just snapped. I get it.

  7. Ooh. Sister Sufferer, I feel your pain.

  8. Ahhhhhh!!!! Thanks for my daily vomit inducement. Just the mention of rolling your eye back with a stick....WTH?? Seriously? Stomach. heaving.

    People really do THAT?????? And lesions??? OMG. OMG. OMG.

    I officially have an eye phobia. Thanks.

    But for the record...radioactive urine? Totally cool.


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