DEAR ABBY: I am severely myopic and can't see without my prescription eyewear. Yet people continually ask me if they can "borrow" my glasses to read the menu. (I work as a hostess.) Abby, my glasses are not reading glasses; they are my eyes -- literally. When I explain this, I get snorts, grunts and muttered comments that I am "rude."
My husband says I should let them try on my glasses and cut out the explanation, as they would immediately realize that they can't see through them. I disagree. I think it is inappropriate to even ask, let alone become offended when I politely refuse.
Abby, I would like to explain the concept of reading glasses versus prescription eyewear: Most people do not walk around with reading glasses fully on their face. Reading glasses are often halfway down the nose or hanging around a person's neck so they don't impair his or her distance vision. If someone is wearing glasses full on their face -- they're usually not reading glasses. If a person is wearing glasses, do not ask to borrow them. Instead, ask if there is a pair of reading glasses at the wait station or host stand. -- THE BLIND LEADING THE BLIND
DEAR "BLIND": I'm printing your letter, but I warn you -- there are none so blind as those who will not see. For a stranger to expect to borrow someone's glasses is presumptuous. If the bows were bent or the lenses were broken, you'd be in serious trouble.
Talk to your employer about keeping a magnifying glass or several pairs of reading glasses in various strengths available for patrons who have forgotten theirs. Many restaurants do. With our aging demographic, it's good business, because people order more when they can see the menu.