The term “Baker’s Dozen” brings back fond memories of my childhood. Often when my mother would take us to the local bakery for a special treat to bring home for desert, the baker would tell her that he gave her a baker’s dozen, and sure enough, when we got home there would be 13 cookies, or 13 donuts, or whatever other sweet treat that she had purchased that day. So, the pleasant memories of my childhood have remained, and I am only sorry that people today no longer will remember going into the corner store to purchase individual candies, and being given a baker’s dozen there as well. Everything is now prepackaged, either in a massive quantity, or in a puny little bag that costs 10 to 15 times what my baker’s dozen candies cost back then. And for those that do remember, I am sure they will attest that the one free donut, or the free piece of candy really did taste far better than all the other ones did.
Now I know what you are saying right now is, “how does this pertain to the stories that this guy usually writes?” So I suppose an explanation is in order. A couple of years ago I became friends with a couple named Peter and Brenda. Peter was selling some of Brenda’s old glasses on an internet auction, and I managed to win one of the bids. I wrote to him in the hopes that he would tell me a little more about Brenda and her myopic progression, and a friendship began. Peter was a younger version of me. He had the same burning desire to have a highly myopic wife, and he had much the same obsession about glasses as I did. However, Peter had been fortunate enough to find his dream lady, whereas all I could do about my fantasies was to put them down on paper.
It didn’t take long before I had also fallen in love with Brenda. Oh, I knew this was foolish, and I knew it wasn’t ever going to be a love that was reciprocated, so I suppose the proper terminology would be that I had become infatuated with Brenda. Often when I called Peter on our Skype voice and video I would speak to, and watch Brenda if Peter wasn’t home. She was beautiful, and to watch the light from the computer screen dance off the plano fronts of her –20D glasses was a sight that made it hard to contain my desires. But, I knew there was never going to be a chance for romance for me, because Brenda was about 2 years older than my daughter, and Peter was now a close friend. So, all I could do was watch, and treasure the memories later.
I have a large group of friends on the internet. Sometimes I will spend a lot of time e-mailing a particular one to the exclusion of others, but then I will have reason to e-mail another. A few of us have Skype, and we sometimes get together for a 3 or 4 way conversation, which is a little hard, since we are from all over the world. All I have is English, but it is amazing that so many people actually can carry on a conversation in English when it is not their native language. The other night I had been on with 4 friends, and the conversation had come around to Peter and Brenda. Since most of us had purchased glasses from their internet auctions we all had a tie to them. But as the conversation went on, I realized that each of us had the same relationship with Peter and Brenda that I did. And I found out that each of the other 4 all felt they were in love with Brenda as well, although they also knew it was really only an infatuation.
Something was burning in my memory. So I contacted 3 more friends I hadn’t written to in a while. I wasn’t surprised when all 3 of them wrote back and told me that they had purchased glasses from Peter on the net, and that they had exchanged a number of letters with Peter and Brenda. With these 3, that made 8 of us who knew, and liked Peter and were in love with Brenda. I wondered how many more of us there were.
I knew that Peter bought Brenda a new pair of glasses at least once a month. I was a little amazed that Brenda would accept that, because most very high myopes I have known find that they get accustomed to the way they see through one particular pair of glasses. They know and like the fit of the glasses. The glasses sit at the same place on their nose all the time, and the feel of the glasses in the right place is comforting to them. But, Brenda had such a large collection of glasses that she was able to switch between pairs with ease. She never wore one pair of glasses long enough at a time to become completely familiar with that one pair. Where most women wear jewelry to accent their appearance, Brenda wore her glasses. And she had quite a selection. Peter had shown me a picture of Brenda’s 25 pairs of current glasses. They had sold quite a number of Brenda’s old glasses, ones that were no longer strong enough for her to wear. But, rather than extend the collection past 25, Peter was now selling glasses in Brenda’s current prescription, which had stabilized a couple of years ago. I kidded him that if he and Brenda were to travel anywhere in the world they probably would never be very far from a pair of Brenda’s old glasses, and he laughed and agreed with me.
I don’t know how the idea came to me, but over the period of a few days a thought had gelled in my mind. I called Peter, and I suggested that I would like to purchase a new pair of glasses for Brenda to wear. His initial reaction was that she wouldn’t accept that. But then I told him that I wasn’t going to do it for nothing. I wanted Brenda to send me back one of her other pairs, a pair that she no longer liked. So finally Brenda agreed to accept a pair of glasses of my choosing. The conditions were that if she liked the glasses I chose for her, she would wear them, and send me a pair from her collection of her choosing. If she didn’t like them, she would then send my glasses right back to me. Of course I didn’t want that to happen, so I knew I was going to be very careful about my selection. I wanted a real pair of Brenda’s glasses. I wanted a pair that still had her perfume on them, and still might have traces of makeup around the lenses or a piece of her hair caught in the hinge, or something.
Brenda was a little hard to fit. Her pd was 62, but she needed a monocular pd because her right eye was 31.5 and her left eye was 32.5. However, Peter had purchased glasses for Brenda from all of the internet suppliers, so when I ordered the first pair of glasses that were intended for Brenda, I informed the supplier that these glasses were for her. I suppose that this must have raised a few eyebrows at the supplier, but I didn’t care. Of course, I couldn’t only order just one pair of glasses. Naturally I had to order 2 pairs. After examining the 2 pairs closely, I decided which pair I would rather send on to Peter and Brenda. The other pair was added to my collection, with the thought that I would also send them on after I had gotten a pair back from Brenda.
I don’t know if the problem started when I mentioned what I had done to one of my other friends. Possibly he had the same idea, because I remember now that he went strangely silent when I told him what I was doing. I had provided Brenda with 4 pairs of glasses over a 4-month period, and I was pleased that she had liked the glasses I sent her enough to keep them all, and return a pair from her collection to me for my collection each time. My own pd is about 65, and while I could wear Brenda’s old glasses when doing GOC, I was inducing a bit of prism by doing so. But it didn’t really seem to affect me, other than that I immediately got a headache that soon went away after removing my GOC.
After I had sent Peter and Brenda the fourth pair I got a note back with the return of my pair from Brenda’s collection that asked me to please stop. I called Peter on the Skype phone, and I soon understood why. During the previous month Brenda had received 10 pairs of glasses. Apparently there were now 10 of us that were doing this same thing. I didn’t know who the latest 2 admirers of Brenda were, but I knew that I was disappointed that my little glasses exchange was going to have to come to a halt.
It didn’t take long before I discovered just who the other 2 members of our merry little band of Brenda admirer’s were. I knew them, just not as well as I knew the other 7 people. So, I ended up e-mailing everyone, and I suggested that instead of all 10 of us sending Peter and Brenda a new pair of glasses every month we should start a glasses of the month club, and each one of us would then supply Brenda with a new pair of glasses once every 10 months. The disappointment in not being able to “trade’ glasses with Brenda any more led to a general consensus that this would be completely acceptable to every one of us. When I was trying to set up a schedule, to determine what month everyone should have, I made a joke and suggested that we should find 2 more admirers of Brenda, and that way we could have a real glasses of the month club, with Brenda being the recipient of a new pair of glasses from a new admirer every month.
Bad joke. Within a very few days we had our other 2 members. Now there were an even dozen of us that were willing to supply Brenda with a pair of new glasses every month. It was easier to set up a 12-month schedule though. And, I suspected that if any of the dozen dropped out, we would likely have other admirer’s of Brenda waiting in the wings to fill in the empty slot.
This worked well for the first year. Brenda received a new pair of glasses monthly, and she returned a pair of glasses from her collection to the person who provided her with the new glasses that month. The first sign that anything was amiss was one day when I was chatting with Peter on Skype. When a person is out of sorts with another person in an e-mail you cannot readily ascertain this. However, in a voice conversation there are little nuances that tell you that the other person is a little upset. I noticed, and I had to ask, but Peter put me off with a comment about it being nothing, just a problem at work.
Now I like Peter, I truly do. I have long felt that he and Brenda had a relationship that no other person in the world could have. Most ladies who wear strong glasses can never accept the fact that there are men out there that actually find them attractive when wearing their glasses. And, most ladies who wear strong glasses end up thinking that the glasses loving man who is interested in them is only interested in them because of their glasses. This is far from the case. I myself once met a lady whose glasses were exactly what I wanted a lady to require. Her glasses had a –3D difference between her left and right eye, matching my difference exactly, and with the correct matching plus contact lenses I could easily wear her old glasses. She felt her vision was quite poor, but actually I thought she had extremely good eyesight with her –25D and –22D prescription, and I felt that so many people had told her that she couldn’t see very well that she actually believed them. I still own a pair of her glasses, and I do insert the matching contacts and wear them around from time to time. But, after spending a bit of time with this lady I realized that her glasses were the only attraction that was there for me, and I knew that the relationship would be headed for failure. She was actually an attractive lady when I first met her, and she could be again. However she was a heavy smoker, and when she quit she put on quite a bit of weight. This would not have turned me off, because her glasses more than offset this, but she was not a smart person. Some people have a quick grasp of things, and can discuss any number of topics with a reasonable amount of intelligence. She was a beer and potatoe chips person though. She didn’t read any books, and her ideas of life were gleaned through the many television soap opera’s that she watched. And, when she realized that she had gained more weight than she felt comfortable carrying, rather than exercising to try to reduce, she took up smoking again. But the real kicker was when she went for her last eye examination, and the doctor told her that she had the beginnings of cataracts. When they developed a little further she was going to have her lenses removed, and she would possibly no longer need glasses. So we were still friends, but that was all we had ever been.
I was reading something into Peter’s morose attitude that I wasn’t sure of. Was he having a problem in his relationship with Brenda? If he was I knew a dozen men who would be more than willing to try to replace him in Brenda’s heart.
I was afraid to speak about this amongst the other eleven members of the glasses of the month club. If there was trouble brewing in the relationship, and if there was a chance for me, I wanted to be front and center.
My good friend Andy asked me one day when we were chatting if I had noticed that Peter seemed a little down. I couldn’t lie to Andy, so I revealed that I had noticed the same thing. I knew that Peter spoke with everyone else frequently, so now the problem was likely out in the open. Andy and I called Peter on a 3-way Skype call.
I came right out and asked Peter, “There is something bothering you. Is it a problem in your relationship with Brenda?”
“No, not in my relationship.” Peter answered with a bit of hesitation.
“Well, are some of the others of the group trying to cut your grass?” Andy asked.
“No, not that either. It is really nothing.” Peter said.
“You are wrong. There is something, and as friends we have noticed it. All we are trying to do is help.” I added.
“Oh, what the heck. I hadn’t wanted to say anything, because I felt that I would appear ungrateful. But it is bothering me that you guys are buying Brenda a new pair of glasses every month, and now I don’t ever get to go shopping with Brenda for new glasses. This is a part of my fantasies that I have lost, and I miss it.” Peter told us.
“We can fix that.” Andy and I said in unison.
“How?” Peter asked.
“In the future you can go shopping with Brenda wherever you want to go. When you find a new pair, or a special type of lens that Brenda wants to try, you can send all the particulars to the person who has their turn that month. They will send you the money, you can buy the glasses, Brenda can wear them, and she can return them a year later.” I replied.
“But what if we choose a pair that is very expensive. So far we have been using the lower index lenses, but I am sure that Brenda wants to try some higher index ones, and they are a lot more expensive.” Peter said.
“Well, in that case, let the person who has their turn that month have a choice. If the glasses are too expensive he can decline, and then the next person in the rotation can have the option. If the next person chooses to pay the amount required, then the other person gets to change with him for the following month. I don’t think this will happen though, because whoever pays for the glasses will receive them back a year later.” Andy said.
“Well, there is another problem. Sometimes Brenda wants to keep a special pair of glasses for more than a year. She doesn’t always want to send them back when she has to.” Peter told us.
“Well, lets do it this way. If someone buys a very expensive pair of glasses for Brenda, you will know who it was. I don’t think it will matter if Brenda keeps the glasses for as long as she wants to, providing the sender eventually gets them back.” I replied.
“All right, we will try that. That is a good idea, and now I will be able to take Brenda glasses shopping again.” Peter replied.
What about you Peter? Do you still buy Brenda a pair of glasses every once in a while?” I asked.
“Do you think I could ever stop?” Peter replied with a question.
“Nope.” I answered.
So, after we disconnected, Andy and I went about discussing the new arrangements with the other members. Everyone was eventually in agreement with the rules. The member who was supplying the glasses for the following month had already made his purchase, so we made sure that no one else had done so. We were lucky. After the next month was over Peter would be able to take charge of Brenda’s eyewear again. And we would all still be very happy; because we would eventually receive our own purchases back again. There is nothing like having a pair of women’s glasses, with the smell of her perfume still clinging to them for a person’s collection.
I was thinking originally of calling this tale “The Glasses Of The Month Club.” This name would fit, but since there are 12 of us that are ardent admirers of Brenda, and one who actually has her with him at all times, I realized that she had a baker’s dozen of admirer’s, so the title I eventually chose seemed strangely appropriate.