Why I stopped wearing glasses

I am frequently asked where I got the idea to write a book about a girl who receives a pair of magic glasses. There are several answers to this question, but the initial idea was based upon an embarrassing experience from seventh grade.

Growing up, I was “the smart girl in glasses,” a title I am now proud of. But when seventh grade rolled around I decided to shed my studious image, and get contacts. Except it turned out I was pretty inept with small pieces of eyewear. So my contacts were banished to the refrigerator. Right next to the packets of Taco Bell hot sauce.

Anyway, one day at school I was late getting out to lunch, and as I was walking across a field to join my friends, I realized *Newton McNastybooger—one of the cutest boys in school—was heading straight for me! His eyes were fixed intently on mine, and he was smiling!

In that minute, my future flashed before my bespectacled eyes. As Mrs. Newton McNastybooger.

A million thoughts ran through my mind. I wished my friends were here to see this. I wished I hadn’t just scarfed an onion bagel. I wished I hadn’t gotten that out-of-control perm.

As our paths met, I stopped walking. My life was about to change, I knew it.

Right then, Newton brought his hand to his mouth, licked two fingers, and proceeded to slide them down my glasses. And then he just kept walking.

He never said a word to me.

I stepped back, stunned. Newton’s spit settled on my glasses, making everything look hazy. I was now thanking God none of my friends were with me. I wiped my glasses off and continued over to my friends. I never told anyone what happened.

That night, I spent hours learning the finer points of sticking small pieces of plastic into my eyes. And the next morning, I showed up to school in contacts. Because I had learned a valuable lesson. My glasses had magic powers: they repelled boys.

What about you, any embarrassing incidents from seventh grade you wish to share? What do you think I should have said to Newton, who is probably now a very nice man with a brood of his own little McNastyboogers?

*Name has been changed to protect the guilty.

Subscribe to posts by email or RSS. Let’s connect on Facebook, Goodreads or Twitter.

This entry was posted in Writing and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

18 Responses to Why I stopped wearing glasses

  1. I love this post. You are so funny, Jenny.

  2. Nicci Reynolds says:

    My mom use to make all of my clothes. In my 7th grade year she made me a dress that proceeded to fall apart at the seams, literally, while I was at school. I ran to the office holding the pieces of my dress tightly to my body while the other kids looked on pointing and laughing.

    p.s. There is a Newton McNastyboogers in every school.

  3. Oh, I feel your pain with the big old glasses! Unfortunately I’m not able to wear contacts! 🙁 But God is good… and I found a Prince Charming who also wears glasses! 🙂

  4. My 13yo just got contacts, and has been struggling to wear them. She does recognize that people treat her differently when she’s wearing them, even though they are super sassy and she’s very good with her eye make-up.

    I’m going to introduce her to your blog!

    • Alison-
      People can be pretty unkind with things like glasses and braces. Tell your daughter I now love glasses, and am waiting to get a pair of super sassy ones myself!

  5. Theresa– You have a great Prince Charming, and beautiful kids to go with!
    Nicci- I love that story! And I agree there are McNastyboogers everywhere :0)

  6. Char Klassen says:

    Creative. Loving the nasty boy name. You’ve got the gift girl!

  7. Tom Horn says:

    Can’t wait until your book comes out. I want to buy it for my 9 year old daughter, who thinks “boys are stupid”. Congratulations on your publishing news!

  8. Ann says:

    I had a pair of those glasses growing up, too!

  9. Carrie says:

    I was the strange girl who wanted braces and glasses. I failed my eye exam on purpose so I could get a pair for reading. They looked a lot like the ones you are wearing. 🙂
    I am sure you have heard all my horror stories from my 7th grade year from hell. I was the new girl in school whom everone thought was stuck up, smart and rich girl (most I was not). I was teased daily (and pansed by mean chola chicks).

  10. Heather O says:

    Great post Jenny. I still bounce back and forth with glasses. I had the horrid sixth grade oversized glasses and then I had the freaky colored contacts. (aggh) Now I am back to my glasses and I love them. I was teased for the glasses AND for being nearly 6ft tall. I never had the spit and finger method on the shades, but I did have the “are there shoulder pads in those shirts?” I feel your pain sister. 🙂 Walk away from the weak and be the strong one walking ahead even if you have a little spittle on your shades. Love the post.

    • Heather-
      I love your glasses pictures! I’ve gone back and forth between glasses and contacts as well (I’m actually wearing my glasses right now because I just had a rather unfortunate contact-rolling-up-into-my-eyelid episode). I’m currently on the hunt for some cute glasses–I love your holiday glasses color change, wish I’d thought of it first!

  11. Lisa Allen says:

    You never did tell that story to us! That story makes me a little sad. Junior highers are such brats sometimes. 🙂