The disturbing discovery that the world is shrinking.

When I remove my new specs – which I must do every time I change from looking at something within arm’s reach to looking at something further off – I notice a very obvious effect. The world gets a great deal smaller.

Long-sight is something that happens to us with old age, as the elasticity of our lens reduces. It’s quite natural. It happens to us all, leaving us gurning at the small print on food labels in the supermarket, head cocked back and to one side, the mysterious jar held as far from our face as we can get it. The gurning isn’t optional. It somehow goes with the territory, as if society demands that we flag up our disabilities for others, and the internationally accepted sign of poor eyesight is the gurn.

Small world. Big world. Small world.

And yet before I had glasses, I was unaware of the world having shrunk. It seemed a perfectly normal size to me, but since I have received the gift of reality from Specsavers, I marvel at how much smaller the world is now than it was when I was a child. It’s tiny. I can prove it.

Look at Wagon Wheels. Go back and look at your primary school assembly hall. Hyde Park used to be colossal, but these days you can fire a Strepsil clean across it if you sneeze unexpectedly.

Things are shrinking fast. It’s a fact.

I pondered the scientific roots of this phenomenon. Astronomy and physics tell us that the universe is flying apart. The red shift, all that stuff – it proves the speed and direction of objects in the universe. It tells us that things are, unquestionably, getting further away from one another. Clearly that is also what happens to humans. As we age, our souls and reality fly further and further apart. Behind the lenses of our eyes, each person is flying away from reality at an astonishing speed. And so the world looks smaller and smaller in our short span of years.

Eventually we will merely be bright dots to one another. At that point, even the really big jars of Marmite will look small. And I suppose that what we call “dying” is when someone stops peering through their eye lenses, and wanders off to find something bigger to look at.

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About chiller

Rachel Coldbreath spent 20 years working internationally as a technical specialist on large data collections for law firms, before becoming disabled. She blogs on a variety of topics from the news and politics to gardening and how very annoying it is, being disabled. Habits include drilling holes about 1mm away from where they ought to be, and embarking with great enthusiasm on tasks for which she is neither physically nor intellectually equipped.
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5 Responses to The disturbing discovery that the world is shrinking.

  1. This reminds me of when I was studying philosophy, which was so many years ago that it’s scary. The world was undoubtedly much bigger back then, which does seem to support your theory. This makes be slightly sad and a little bit calm and content. Which is oddly suitable for a Sunday afternoon.

  2. dakegra says:

    Mars bars are getting smaller too.

  3. Fles says:

    That was a beautifully unexpected twist at the end that snatched me suddenly from growing gloom and sadness to joy and optimism. Thanks!

  4. Capojop says:

    This explains a lot.

    I have been extremely long-sighted since birth. You’d probably have to been in Belgium before the lens in my eye focused the light reflecting from your jumper on my retina.

    I have also, always, had a slightly shaky grasp on what others call reality.

  5. almost witty says:

    It could be that portion sizes are definitely getting smaller, all thanks to the recession…

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