When I was a kid I was bespectacled (I used to confuse that word with ‘bespeckled’, but I just wore glasses, I wasn’t spotty). It’s a horrible thing to have to wear glasses around the time hormones are starting to rage and I wanted to look like a combo of Elvis and James Dean, not like Arnold Stang.
But, glasses I was stuck with in order to correct what was known as a ‘cast’. That meant that I, especially when tired. would go rather crosseyed. So then my choices were either Arnold Stang or old silent film actor Ben Turpin. Sucks to be a kid who just wanted to be cool. Of course, I had no way of knowing then that my idolized J. Dean was hugely myopic and wore specs in his off hours. If only I’d known.
And then Buddy Holly arrived on the pop music scene. And not only was he good and immensely talented, he became a pop icon in short order — and the sucker wore glasses! I believe I was finally born just a few months before “the day the music died”. That good old boy from Lubbock became my personal hero. Well musically and creatively he was sans pariel for the day — but mainly he wore glasses! Initially he donned kind of dweeby looking two-tone frame things like a science teacher would wear, but he ultimately opted for very cool looking horn rims.
I begged and pleaded with my parents to get me some of those. Ultimately (which was entirely unlike them) they relented. I got the glasses and kids started commenting on how much I looked like Buddy Holly. I didn’t think I did, but if looking like Buddy was going to get me laid by my own Peggy Sue, what cared I.
I regret to add, as an aside, the glasses did not do the trick in the carnal regard. Somehow I needed more than glasses, like a boss car and a lot of money. I had neither. Just glasses.
And eventually I got tired of the Buddy Holly comparisons. Especially true after his sadly untimely death. At the same time, my ‘cast’ repaired, I was able to shuck my ‘four-eyes’ accoutrement and look out at the world through what God gave me. It wasn’t until I was in my mid 40s that age changes demanded I get ‘readers’ and that is still all I need.
But, Buddy and I did share a moment of time many years ago, and for that I am grateful for both his talent and his visage.
And I still love his music.