vendredi 20 août 2010

I can see clearly now

I finally got a new pair of glasses. I love them. They're kind of ugly betty type glasses, with frames designed by one of France's emerging talents in the field. I got them at Eyes on Fremont. This is one of my favorite small businesses in Seattle: hip and knowledgeable salespeople, all of whom are wearing groovy glasses with a smile; a wonderful but not overwhelming selection; terrific after-sales service; consistently high quality product, selected with an EYE for aesthetics. Sure, you'll pay less at Costco or Sears, as my ophthamologist said; but you won't find the same groovy frames or get a pair of glasses crafted with the same care.

It's amazing how the world lights up and comes into focus when you have a pair of glasses adapted to your eyesight. What I love most about this latest pair is the coverage they offer. I took my oldest pair of glasses in with me because I had broken them while they served as a replacement for the lost pair (boo hoo on that; they were great designer frames by YSL that I bought just two years ago from another great small business in Paris). They're about 25 years old and I got them at one of the Lissac outlets in Paris. Here's a historical detour for anyone interested in the history of eyewear:

Georges Lissac crée son premier magasin, rue Dauphine avec deux de ses frères, à Paris, en 1919. Le premier « mégastore optique » ouvre,rue de Rivoli en 1938. Cette succursale devient le siège social de la SARL Frères Lissac créée en 1931. Ce magasin demeure aujourd’hui encore le plus grand magasin optique d’Europe.
Précurseur en matière de communication dans l’histoire de l’optique, Georges Lissac lance, en 1932 la première campagne publicitaire de l’histoire de l’optique avec le slogan : « Des lunettes toujours parfaites à prix honnêtes ».
Précurseur, Georges Lissac propose un examen gratuit de la vue quand, à l’époque, la majeure partie des consommateurs choisit ses verres en les essayant.

Anyway, when the guy at Eyes on Fremont saw me old frames, he went nuts. Wow, he said, those are really back in style right now. I had figured this out myself given the number of hipsters who have commented on them in the past two months of so. He suggested I have them made into prescription sunglasses.

The world looks clear now and Puget Sound was like glass last night, so we went for a little pre-dinner kayak ride We put in (that's what the pros say) at Salty's and went out to inspect the seal raft. No seals last night! But the air was so clear; there was no haze at all. Every line and detail, every nuance of color in the downtown skyline stood out like an image in a viewfinder. Okay, maybe that was because of my new glasses, whatever. We went down to Jack Block Park to see if the seals were hanging out there. They weren't, but we had fun photographing barge 255. Then we headed back toward Salty's and popped open our beers offshore. I'm not a beer drinker, but there is something so satisfying about sitting in a kayak and drinking a beer while gazing alternately at the revelers on the deck at Salty's and the Seattle skyline.