Wednesday, November 29, 2023

I have Chapsticks and reading glasses stashed everywhere

It feels like a very middle-aged person thing to say, but no matter where I am or what I'm doing, I'm never very far from a pair of reading glasses or a tube of Chapstick.

I make sure of this by keeping glasses and Chapsticks everywhere I'm likely to be, from my nightstand and PA announcing bag to the glove compartment in my car and the top desk drawer in my office.

Reading glasses are a relatively recent must-have, but my dependence on Chapstick is longstanding. My lips chap easily, or at least I've always thought they chap easily, which is really the same thing.

I use the word "dependence" intentionally, by the way, since a quick Google search suggests there's no such thing as lip balm "addiction." Yet I wouldn't have been surprised to find it's a real thing.

If I go, say, 3-4 hours without applying Chapstick, my lips always start to feel a little raw and irritated. Chapstick solves this problem almost immediately, so I stock up and carry it around as if my life depended on it.

Which, again, it doesn't. It's more a habit than an absolute physical need.

As for reading glasses, well, I've covered this topic before, and there's no denying the need is there. Until my early 50s, I could read just about anything unaided. Now, however, you'll constantly find me holding books, menus and other printed material at arm's length to get the words to come into focus.

So pretty much everywhere I keep a Chapstick I also keep a pair of cheap reading glasses. The magnification I require is pretty low, as these things go, but I know my current 1.5x prescription will creep higher and higher as the years go on.

As far as I know, there's simply no avoiding it.

So I'm trying to embrace it. Chapped lips I've never embraced, but blurry words on a page? That I can (mostly) live with.


  1. Whether you are a lip-balm addict or not - you had me with this picture on LinkedIn -> never forget the "vote for Pedro" campaign or LaFawnduh as a character ;D Thank you for reminding me...and sorry, with this picture I just cannot focus on the topic ;)

    1. Haha, I wondered whether the picture would distract from the post! I knew there would be some Napoleon Dynamite fans out there. Hope you're doing well, Anna!