Friday, May 6, 2011

The Eye's Have it / Here's Looking at You!

That's not Mars pictured above. It's an image of my left eye, taken yesterday, during my first "real" eye exam in decades. It was a simple, routine exam to make sure I'm wearing the appropriate strength "cheaters", which by my standard is about 2.5 magnification. Well, I was right about what I need, but the glasses I have been using were too weak at 2.0 strength. I keep about 6 pairs strewn about, in all the places where I will likely need them. And even then, I have several pairs of the older/lesser strength glasses lying about as spares, just in case. Weak glasses are better than no glasses at all!

Anyway, this eye exam was really interesting, as I've said, it's been decades since I have had a real one, so I was surprised at all the gadgets and gizmos available to conduct an examination with. In my mind, an eye exam consisted of simply looking at a chart, one usually mounted on the wall. I always read the bottom line as "Made in Philadelphia- Local 400." Freaks the Examiner out at DMV when you're right. And if you're wrong, it doesn't count anyway...

So, like I said, I was very impressed with the examination, as well as the technology. The results were good. I can see 20/15 or so, long distance, and for reading I need 2.5 reading glasses, which, as I've explained, I already have. Not bad for an old guy!

The most impresive thing to me was the image above, which is of my left eye, from the rear. That circle you see, which I initially thought was my iris, is actually the rear of my eye, and the main "disc" where all of the nerves in the eye come together and form the entire "Optic" nerve, which leads to the brain. So, in essence this is a picture of how we see what we see. I find it fascinating.

We all take our eyes for granted, until the day when we suddenly can't see. Take a little time today and think, if even just for a moment, about not being able to see the world around you, or the faces of those whom you love. And the thought of never being able to read! That's a sobering thought, especially for me.

Thanks, Dr. Crawford for such a patient, and educational experience, though I do hope not to see you in the near future!

(Click on the above to enlarge it for Dr. Crawford's contact information.)

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