Relativity and a Lazy Eye

We learn the theory of relativity at an early age. Most of us hear about it from our high school physics teacher, others of us are lucky enough to be able to wait until college before we skim over it in some half written notes or a book, a book that was never really read. In a world where many things are relative to one another, a lazy eye is in no way relative to the average lazy American, and physiology, or God, is to thank for that.
I don’t have a lazy eye, but I have known people that have had one. As a kid, I envied the boy who made his eye wander about his mystical eye socket. He had the attention of everyone at the party. I wasn’t envious of the attention, I was envious of his ability to make his eye float from me to a friend, a friend that was standing on the completely other side of him, and then back again. I needed a cool trick to do. I had never learned how to gleek, roll my tongue, make very good armpit noises with my hand, or anything else that most kids at that age were able to pull out of their “bag of odd things they could do with their anatomy”. But what if a lazy eye was relative to being a fat, lazy American? My whole perspective would have changed and the eye floating trick would have never been the same.
To be lazy in America means a couple of things. It means that you sleep until 12, make routine trips to fast food chains, take clear advantage of the express lane at grocery stores, and wait 3 to 4 weeks before doing a load of laundry. All things being relative, a lazy eye would sort of mean the same thing.
Imagine waking up one morning to the sound of an annoying alarm clock. As you crawl out of your warm, pleasurable bed you make a trip to the bathroom. You turn on the light, grab your toothbrush, and look into the mirror. In a state of horror, you realize that your left eye is still closed. You’re thinking of all the reasons why your eye is closed when you suddenly realize that your left eye is….lazy. It won’t arise any time soon. It’s still asleep. At that moment it’s non-productive. It sleeps when it wants for however long it wants. It functions on a totally different system that the other eye, with completely different genetics. You’re right eye is wide awake, your left eye wide shut.
With feelings of embarrassment, you think about the previous night and wonder how long this eye, with a mind of its own, stayed up watching TV. You hope your eye will wake up, like the rest of your body, and you hope it’s before you go to class or to your very important job interview. It doesn’t, and all you can do is point to your lazy eye and say to others, “sorry, this one’s a little lazy, he’ll get up around noon.”
Luckily, being lazy and having a lazy eye aren’t relative to one another. Consequently, the floating eye trick still amazes me. If you see me around, I’m always down for seeing it.

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