The moment of truth (again...)

I decided to face up to some simple home truths today on my way into work, just to put a little slant on the mundane drag that is the 9-5 conveyor belt and make it all bearable.

The first home truth was the one that I face up to every day - that I will never have a girlfriend. I done my usual lament and that was pretty much standard stuff. One home truth out the way.

Secondly I decided to face up to that other fact about myself that I have neglected to confront. I have been wearing glasses since early in primary school, probably from about the age of 6 and I have become so used to the feeling of stainless steel resting on my nose thatit's easy to forget that I am virtually blind. It is said that when the great impressionist painter, Paul Cézanne was offered a pair of glasses to remedy his ailing sight he replied in contempt, "Take those wretched things away from me!" and continued to draw as he saw.

So I decided to face the facts for once, and whipped my glasses off on the way into work and saw London is a fresh light. Well alright I kinda felt London in a hazy blur. My eyesight is so bad I can't even read a book without my glasses on, at least not without looking like a prat, and one of the first things I became aware of up close after taking my glasses off on Gower street was the big white van that nearly killed me.

I became acutely aware of sounds, not unlike the amazing Daredevil, and revelled in the feeling of being like Matt Murdock my childhood hero, the blind lawyer who flies from rooftops in a devil costume fighting crime. Yes I have read Frank Millers Man Without Fear and I have been wearing my Elektra T-shirt for years before you ask. But unlike Matt Murdock, I found myself pretty bloody lost in the mass of bustle and navigating purely by memory and faint outline.

But I couldn't help but think that this is my True London, the one that I have denied myself through the artificial lens and one that still holds for me every bit of fascination, if not more so. What I found today was a different London in many ways, but one that was still very much the same.

Once the unfamiliarity of the fuzzy shapes was overcome i came to feel strangely secure in my new London, because it was so much less sharp, the edges were softer and the speed was prematurely slowed through my eyes, which were unable to take in and process the fast pace and stress of London life.

What I realised was that we speccys actually have an advantage over the 20-20 brigade, that cannot be underestimated. We have more than one view of the world and can choose which one it is we want and when we want it. A satisfied smile spread across my face (as buses and cars piled up around the blind guy).

But probably the best thing about this new view on the world comes back to my first home truth. As I said the stress of London was reduced to nothing but mere colours (in much the same way as the impressionists soon made colour the subject of their art, such as Claude Monets Water Lillies or Paul Cézannes Mont Sainte Victoire demonstrates. When colour becomes the subject the world is seen not as a mass of objects but just a mass, a unity and the disunities that cause stress are removed.

And in my case, the mass of humanity was much easier for me to take than the constant barrage of beautiful girls London possesses, that serve to tantalise and taunt me in my state of eternal solitude. All I knew was that within this seething mass of colour was joy and pain in equal measure. This is the essence of the Tao.

But one thing was constant despite the view. With or without glasses, London is a feeling that touches evey cell of my body and confirms my existence. My name is Andy and I am a Londoner.
blog comments powered by Disqus