As glasses styles get smaller and smaller, I find that my glasses no longer offer the protection for my eyes from wind and dust when I’m cycling.
So I decided to treat myself to a good pair of glasses that I would use for sporting purposes. They would be larger than my current glasses, they would curve a bit around my face and they would have transition lenses to offer some daylight dimming but would not interfere with evening and night activities.
I have a pretty modest prescription. I can see things at a distance but I just can’t focus well enough to read signs and see details at a distance easily.
I decided on a pair of Oakley Tightrope glasses as I thought the frame was pretty attractive and the Rx-able lenses would shield my eyes nicely.
I purchased the glasses on November 4, 2009 from my local Pearle Vision shop and would need to pick them up a couple of weeks later as I was headed out of state on a week long cruise.
When I picked up the glasses, I knew there was something odd about them as they made me a bit woozy but I couldn’t put my finger on the problem. immediately assuming that I just needed to get used to the new lenses I wore them out of the store and tried them for a full day.
It turns out that the curvature of the lens required for this wraparound style frame introduces some distortion on the inner portion of the lenses (this is the part between the pupil and the nose). Looking through the lens from my pupil toward the periphery was perfect, but trying to look toward the center had everything appearing to “bunch up”. Unless I’m looking straight ahead, at least one eye was always facing a compressed view of the world. Moving around, i.e. driving a car is so dynamic that the constant shift of perspective was nauseating.
So I took the glasses back and they actually experimented with a couple of lenses even grinding one on the spot to see if that would work. My desired frame could only work with a limited range of curvatures (I believe a “7” or an “8”, whatever that means in optical terms). But the result was still the same with that peculiar compression toward the center of my view.
They then ordered in a few alternate frames that I could try to see if any would meet my needs. Ironically, when I went in to check them out the original tightrope frame was also in the tray and I gravitated to it immediately before we all realized that those were my original frame choice. None of the other alternatives offered the protection that I was looking for. They were pretty stylish but not so sporty.
So the Pearle Vision folks then shipped the frames and prescription off to Oakley and, to their credit, did not charge me any extra for having the lenses ground there. Apparently there is a significant premium to doing so that they elected to eat as we were now in early January, about 2 months after this Odyssey had begun.
I picked up the glasses about a week ago and – ta da! – the lens is optically correct for me.
I was, for a while, worried that Pearle was just trying to make me overstay my 60 day chargeback limit for my credit card. I don’t deal often with things optical but my recent dealing with Wal-Mart’s optical department had made me very wary.
But the Pearle Vision folks were true to their word and they made sure that my prescription and my glasses needs were met. I’ll be popping in next week to thank them personally and to ensure that they know that their efforts are recognized and appreciated.