Life Advice: My Eyeglasses Phobia and Absurd Baking Formulas

Welcome to the third instalment of Life Advice From an Unemployed Artist! Folks, I think this is my favourite one yet.

Can you prove that tan-1 x < x for all x > 0 (Using mean value theorem on {o,x} for tan-1x)? It’s a tricky question that is preventing me from correctly mixing the ingredients for a fruit cake this evening. Thanks and sprinkles.

Math isn’t my strong point. For this problem, I consulted my roommate Matthew (herein referred to as “M. Bomb”) who is completing his Masters in Geophysics at Memorial University. He agreed to take the time out from his thesis writing to solve this head-scratcher, and the results were outstanding. I can’t thank him enough, but I will try with a beer.

formula for fruitcake

(Seriously guys, M. Bombs deserves some applause for that one.)

I recently got contact lenses for the first time. My question is: how can I remember to take out my contacts when I’m drunk (like super drunk) and if I’m drunk should I even try to take my contacts out or will I take out my eyeball by mistake?

Let me tell you a little story which will guarantee you’ll never forget to take out your contact lenses again. Trust me, I’ve had plenty of experience with the whole “removing-my-contact-lenses-when-contact-lenses-have-already-been-removed” thing.

When I got my contact lenses in 9th grade, I refused to wear my glasses. I shunned them. In my mind, they were hideous and disfiguring. I wouldn’t be seen in public wearing them. This continued on into university, where I literally would not step outside my dorm room until my contacts were in my eyeballs. Unfortunately, being a first-year university student meant I spent at least 3 nights a week out until all hours of the morning, which usually ended up with me crashing while still wearing them. My idiot doctor told me this was mostly okay.

OH THE HUMANITY. To compensate, I dyed my hair blonde.

Then I started having problems. My right eyeball swelled shut one day. My eyes would turn pink when putting in my lenses, and I had difficulty seeing. Finally, when I moved to St. John’s, I went to a different eye doctor. She examined my eyes and said I was essentially suffocating my eyeballs and would eventually go blind if I kept up with my habits. There was already a large amount of scarring on my left pupil, and I was forbidden to wear my contacts for 3 months. Even after those 3 months were up, I could only wear my contacts again 3 nights a week, and only for 8 hours at a time.

I lost my mind; this was a massive shift in my thinking. I literally had seizures, and I’m not exaggerating at all.

Fortunately, I qualified for Lasik eye surgery which totally reversed the damage I had done to my eyes. I’m still paying off the surgery, but in my case, it was a wise decision and I no longer have to dish out lots of cash for breathable lenses. I just had my yearly check-up and I’m still at 20/20 vision! If you continue being irresponsible like I was, you should probably consider surgery yourself. 10 minutes to undo 15 years of blindness is totally worth the investment.

Got a question? Ask away! Refer to the message box in the sidebar.

  • March 23 2011
    Susan D

    Great math and great advice.
    I’ll definitely get laser eye surgery as soon as I can find the money.

    PS: You look cute with your glasses!

    • March 25 2011

      Hahaha, thanks! Sometimes I miss them. But not really.

  • March 23 2011

    Is it bad that I have no idea what you are talking about in the first problem? That is intense. But I can attest to the second problem, well my wife can. She had Lasik before we left and she is now my eyes for everything. No more annoying contacts and glasses expense.

    • March 25 2011

      Don’t worry, I’m pretty sure 90% of my readers can’t solve that problem. We’re writers, not mathematicians!

  • March 23 2011

    M. Bomb makes my life. I will apply that math to all my future baking endeavours.

    I would not have recognized that as a picture of you out of context, holy bajeebus. Contacts freak the hell out of me. I wore them once, and someone else had to take them out for me, I just couldn’t do it. (I may have been drunk…).
    While I’m sure 20/20 vision would be convenient (especially when I get blood spattered on my glasses and can’t clean them off because I’m in surgery and that would break sterility..), I’m very accustomed to my glasses, can barely handle looking at pictures of me sans glasses, and I’m pretty sure they save my life (like when infected body juices gets spattered on my glasses, and not on my eyeballs. . . )

    • March 25 2011

      Really? Well that picture was taken 5 years ago, I think…

  • March 23 2011

    What kind of IDIOT would ask you a math question like that? And…COOKING? WTF????


    Please pass on my thanks to M. Bomb for his fine, fine work in answering my question. Although he’s failed to factor in the mathematical symbol “PIE”:

    (All credit to a certain legalnomad for spotting that one).

    I tried confirming the above proof while I baked, but my calculator got sticky with dough and then died. Worryingly, the original recipes didn’t have dough in them, so I took some kind of wrong turn somewhere. I suck at math, cooking and life. But luckily I’m beautiful, so none of that matters.

    Girls in glasses = hot.

    [ /geek ]

    I too had a scratchy reaction to contacts, and it was such a pisser because I *loved* wearing them. One of these days I will have someone fire high-energy weapons into my face so I can see normally. But it’s on a list of money-dependent stuff, lower than “eat regularly” and “ward off the threat of eviction”, and will have to wait for a bit.

    • March 25 2011

      I know, right?! Who cooks anymore? Microwaves were invented for a reason.

      Funny, after I got rid of the eyeglasses, guys everywhere told me how much they love girls wearing glasses. Who woulda thunk it.

  • March 23 2011

    My favorite thing about contacts is my eyes are relatively close to the same prescription… yet not. After about 3/4 of a day wondering why I’ve got a headache and random nausea I finally realize I’ve put the wrong stupid lens in the wrong stupid eye. Yeah. I’m smart like that (no further proof/equations required).

  • March 23 2011

    I know the pain of contacts and glasses, I’ve needed them since grade four. Apparently I’ve inherited like all of the bad eyesight in my family. Hope one day I can afford eye surgery.

    Your roommate did an awesome job on the math problem. I’m assuming it’s right because I can’t understand it. And if I can’t understand math, it’s too smart for me.

    • March 25 2011

      I know, even if it IS wrong, I have no way to tell it…

  • March 23 2011

    First, ow, my head hurts.

    Second, you look really hot with glasses–like a hot librarian!! And the eyeball story scares the crap out of me, I was thinking about getting contacts and now I’m too scared. Totally get your points for lasik though…totally!!

    • March 25 2011

      It’s not bad! I don’t understand the eyeball phobia! I can stick my finger in my eye and wriggle it around. No biggie.

  • March 24 2011

    I’ve worn glasses since I was the tender age of 3 so I can’t imagine life without some sort of vision aid. I personally like my glasses. They make for a great accessory (when I’m not wearing my contacts).

    • March 25 2011

      So far we have a very pro-glasses readership!

  • March 24 2011

    Ahhhhh! I already have a huge phobia of contact lenses and refuse to wear them because an ex-boyfriend of mine told me this story about the time he “lost” a contact lens in one of his eyes and didn’t “find” it for like days.That story totally freaked me out. But I think maybe your story freaked me out even more. Blind?! Ahhhhhh!
    Luckily, I don’t mind wearing glasses. In fact, I’m pretty sure I OWN the dorky English teacher look.

    • March 25 2011

      I’ve done that before! They’re really impossible to lose because there’s nowhere for the contacts to go. You can just work them out. Hahaha, I so surprised by how many people are anti-lenses!

  • March 24 2011

    Eyeballs stuff was interesting and a good laugh. That Math Dude needs to get a life. Ya don’t need recipes like that. Just shake in a bit of this and that until it suits yer taste. Cook til it boils, usually 2 smokes. Simmer for three beers and 10 smokes, EZ recipes is the way to go.

    • March 25 2011

      Hahaha, the funny thing is he’s actually an amazing cook…

  • March 24 2011

    This might sound geeky, but I loved the fact that the proof’s written out in Latex (a software generally used for writing out scientific papers – pronounced as Latec) – lends a lot of class and beauty to the text :)

    I’ve been wearing glasses since I was a kid, and somehow didn’t like wearing contacts at all. I even got my sunglasses to be made with the tinted indexed lenses!

    • March 25 2011

      LOL, I passed on the Latex comment to my roommate, he was quite pleased someone picked up on it! Then he gave me a lecture about how “Latex” is actually pronounced “Latek”…

  • March 24 2011

    Ouch. The English teacher in me almost cried at that Math problem, but I LOVE your advice on the contact lenses. I like wearing glasses, but the practicality issues drive me nuts. I want Lasik soon.

    • March 25 2011

      I LOVED how practical Lasik surgery was for travelling…I HATED being in Mexico and not being able to snorkel properly because I had to wear stupid glasses. And switching to prescription sunglasses was annoying as hell. Best decision EVER.

  • March 24 2011

    I’m waiting until they perfect that for over 40 eyes and can correct me for reading too. Waiting. Waiting. Waiting.

  • March 26 2011

    Wow – I’ve never heard of the damage you can do to your eyes like that. Good thing I always had a phobia of wearing contacts (I hate putting stuff in/near my eyes, can’t even wear eyeliner!) – Glad the surgery helped!

    • March 28 2011

      Yep! Although common sense should have told me so…I mean really, it can’t be healthy to have a lense in your eye for days on end.

  • March 27 2011

    Candice, every photo I see of you in glasses you look incredible! I can’t believe you got Lasik. You should buy a pair of prescriptionless glasses to wear just to give yourself a different look from time to time.

    • March 28 2011

      Hahaha, awww, thank you Sabina! Now wouldn’t that be something…spend $3000 on surgery and then get glasses?! It’ll probably happen.

  • April 04 2011
    Bob M

    Just saw this entry….
    Damn! You look hot with the glasses! (Not that you’re not hot now ;) )


    • April 05 2011

      Hahah, why thank you Bob, you mysterious man.

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