In praise of The Future

For the first time since the second world war, neither of my parents have to wear glasses. 

That's something that's a little hard for me to wrap my head around. In the second half of their seventies, both of them have better vision than they've had at any point in their lives. I know laser eye surgery has been around for a good while now, but my folks had never expressed an interest in it. 

The idea that any part of my body would function better in my seventies than in my twenties feels ridiculous to me. From a strictly physical standpoint, everything other than my ability to grow hairs on my ears seems to be heading downhill. Will I be faster, or hear more acutely, heal more quickly, or be able to sing without people giving me that "at least you tried" look when I'm seventy five? 

Last week, my father's vision was so poor that he was essentially unable to read even with absurd looking prescription lenses. Today? He doesn't need any vision correction at all. That's magical. 

(This seems like a good time to link Will B. Mackintosh's essay A Declension Narrative of Paperwork again. It's a good reminder that things are, in general, getting better, although you wouldn't know it listening to all of the folks who long for the good ol' days.)

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One more thing I'm noticing from binge watching The Twilight Zone: In a sense, it's weirdly similar to The Sandman. So many of the stories involve frontiers, earthly and otherwise, where reality seems "soft," where things can meet across time and space in ways they wouldn't otherwise. There's far more theremin and Burgess Meredith in The Twilight Zone, of course....