woensdag 22 juli 2015

Mirjam 031 - 032

From the lyrics of my song "Crystal Veil":

"And thanks to you, Gran, for once making me see
How your world could be pushed back.... or attracted to me"

My fascination with girls and women in glasses started back in 1956. My Gran was an eccentric lady with mood swings. She could be outward and social, then all of a sudden she "closed herself up like a fan" (Suzanne Vega in her best song, "The queen and the soldier"). My Gran had lots of hats and lots of glasses. One day in a restaurant on the top floor of a high building near Central Station in my native Amsterdam, I grabbed my courage together and asked her why she used all those different glasses. Instead of answering, she took me to the window of the restaurant and invited me to put on a couple of glasses that she always carried in her handbag. Gran then asked me to describe what I saw through both pairs. One was for long distance, around -1.00. The other pair was for reading, around +1.50. I was six years of age and my parents had never allowed me to even touch their binoculars. What my Gran gave me in the restaurant was trust in the first place. It was my first experience with the mysterious world of optics. Somehow I got the impression that she used her glasses for long distance to push the world away from her, and the reading glasses to draw the world towards her. Magic tools.... All of a sudden, I thought that my Gran was a magician. During the next weeks, I spent time to watch other women in glasses - were they magicians as well? It all seemed to fit. Unfortunately, my Gran died in 1960 of heart failure, on a boat to the USA. A few years later, I learned the principles of optics and understood the real function of glasses - but the fascination for girls and women in glasses remained the same.

In the upper photo you see Mirjam "pushed back", looking through glasses for short sight. The lower photo shows the model "drawing the world towards her", looking through glasses for long sight. Circle closed, after half a century....

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