Dom Joly: Amusingly, I now wear my own glasses

Share
Related Topics

I've always had 20/20 vision. If I'm honest, I used to look at people wearing glasses with a touch of disdain. To me, it was a physical manifestation of a weak gene pool – a little hint that all was not well within their DNA.

I remember people at school wearing glasses: they were "Four Eyes" or the "Milky Bar Kid" (but only if they were Aryan blond and slightly sickly looking). I used to thank the Lord that, with all the other things I had to be teased about, my eyesight was perfect. I just assumed that you were either "weak of the eye" or not.

Obviously I realised that, when I eventually got to 80, or 85, I might need some light reading specs, but that would be fine – it would make me look distinguished and intellectual while reading complicated statutes over the bar of the House of Lords.

Then strange things started to happen. Often, when I was a bit tipsy or a touch tired, I would find it difficult to focus on a menu or a police caution. Initially, I just put it down to the general stress of life, after all I had 20/20 vision and that was never going to go away? Then, slowly, I found myself holding important legal contracts further and further away from my face until I actually couldn't read them. Obviously, because I had 20/20 vision, there was nothing wrong with my eyesight. Eventually I just started signing everything without reading the small print. Lawyers are trustworthy people, after all. Who's ever heard of a crooked lawyer?

Then things got really serious and I knew I was in trouble – I was having problems focusing on my Xbox games. This was a serious issue. After asking around and inquiring whether less masturbation or more carrot consumption might do the trick, I was finally directed towards the local optician. Stacey made an appointment for me. I had tried to, but couldn't read the telephone number on their website.

"That's proof that you need to go and see them," said Stacey triumphantly. She can be so naive. I explained to her that it was the oldest trick in the book for opticians to make their ads too difficult to read so that you would be convinced you needed to see them. Stacey looked at me as though I was an idiot, but still made the appointment. She knew I was right. I could just about see it in her eyes.

Come the day, and the optician took me into his parlour and started doing tests. Long gone are the simple days of reading letters that get progressively smaller. Now you have to focus on houses and lights through special machines. It was decided that I did need glasses and I was given a prescription for lenses.

Did I want to go and choose some frames, he asked, innocently. Jesus Christ! No wonder people with glasses look so depressed – they are clearly bankrupt. I asked whether I could provide my own frames. "Of course," the optician said, with disdain.

I drove home without incident (as far as I could see) and started rummaging around my props cupboard for some frames. Pretty soon – Bingo! I found a pair of black Prada frames with clear lenses. I had used them for my BBC3 chat show This is Dom Joly, although many people (everyone, in fact) missed the point: I was playing a character in that show, a nasty, egotistical TV presenter called Dom Joly.

In hindsight, I should have called him Jom Doly and all would have been clear. I just thought that if I wore glasses, everybody would understand that I was a "character". They didn't. Most people just thought I was an idiot. Now, for the very few who got it, I can shatter their illusions as well. I am now wandering around in the same glasses for real. It's complicated, this showbiz malarkey.

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Lettings and Sales Negotiator - OTE £46,000

£16000 - £46000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

Recruitment Genius: Home Care Worker - Reading and Surrounding Areas

£9 - £13 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This is a great opportunity to join a s...

Recruitment Genius: Key Sales Account Manager - OTE £35,000

£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Have you got a proven track rec...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - OTE £40,000

£15000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a great opportunity for...

Day In a Page

Read Next
David Cameron visiting a primary school last year  

The only choice in schools is between the one you want and the ones you don’t

Jane Merrick
Zoë Ball says having her two children was the best thing ever to happen to her  

Start a family – you’ll never have to go out again

John Mullin
Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn