Love Means Never Having To Say, 'I Super-Glued My Eye Shut.'
Masie didn’t peak in eighth grade. This means she’s killing it now in both the brains and beauty departments. Back then, she was tall for her age, towering above all the girls, most of the boys, and Mr. O’Mally, the ex-Marine Phys Ed teacher, before she got to middle school. It was the 90’s so she had those bangs, the standard-issue metal braces, and a very sincere smile that somehow didn’t help her situation. To top it off, she was in love. His name was Billy and all the girls in our friend group adored him for his very Dawson from Dawson’s Creek energy. All the parents loved Billy because they had some instinct that he might be gay and appreciated the lack of threat he posed. This story takes place on a Friday and Masie and Billy had a date, their first date ever.
The agreed-upon plan was for Billy’s Nana to pick up Masie and take the two of them to see Men in Black at the Fourplex one town over. Masie rushed home from school and began the agonizing, Sophie’s Choice-like decision of selecting between which of her two J. Crew sweaters to wear. While she tormented her hair with a curling iron in front of her full-length mirror, Billy called. Masie put on the blue-striped sweater and sat down at her desk to talk to Billy only thirty-seven minutes before she would see his face.
Masie has always fidgeted. Always. She picks up something, messes with it, usually breaks it, then has to fix it. It’s been her thing for decades. On this particular Friday in October of 1997, she absentmindedly poked through her desk drawer and found a few pens, a dead Tamagotchi, and a tube of Super Glue. As she and Billy chit-chatted about how certain they were that Will Smith was, like, the best actor, like, ever, she tried to unplug the solidified, clogged Super Glue spout.
She pressed it hard between her thumb and her forefinger while Billy wondered if they’d have time to hit the food court and go to Subway beforehand. Nana didn’t like to drive in the dark so they couldn’t stay to watch the credits even though they’d heard there was a cinematic surprise in the middle of them. Masie pushed the glue tube harder.
As the laws of physics and metal tubes go, the glue shot out of the clamped end, directly into Masie’s eyeball. She screamed into the receiver, possibly causing Billy some irreparable hearing damage.
"MY EYE IS STUCK!” Masie panicked, switching her hold on the phone.
“Nana is on her way,” Billy didn’t know what to do, imagining his one-eyed date wouldn’t get to fully experience Will Smith’s brilliance or well-toned physique with only 50% of her vision.
Masie desperately tried to open her eye to no avail.
“I need to call my parents,” This was when she realized that her hand was possibly permanently attached to the beige office-looking phone that her father had purchased for every room in the house. Masie began to cry. Since there was no outlet for the tears in her left eye, it made everything worse.
Go downstairs and wait for Nana,” Billy suggested hopefully.
“I CAN’T,” Masie sobbed, “my hand…” Masie raised her arm and spread her fingers as the receiver levitated with it, her palm thoroughly glued to the plastic.
“Maybe unplug it and take it with you?”
“Ok… But we still have a date…?” Masie managed to squeeze the words out between sniffles, pushing her palm down to hang up the phone.
She squinted into the mirror and assessed her situation; freshly applied eyeliner and mascara now made her look like she had two bluish-black eyes. What was she going to do with a phone attached to her hand for the rest of her life? She’d wanted to be a lawyer and heard they were on calls a lot so maybe this would work out to her advantage? Masie imagined a life where she was permanently connected to this device. There was no way she would be able to do her bangs. This made Masie cry harder.
She disconnected the cumbersome phone with her right hand, her left hand solidly connected to the receiver, and made her way down the stairs. She was a bit of a mess as she had to hold the phone in one hand with the other rendered useless and could only see out of one blue-eyeshadow-ed eye. Masie is great at a lot of things but at thirteen years old, making good decisions under a ton of pressure and physical distress was not exactly her forté.
Luckily, her parents pulled into the driveway mere minutes later (though Masie insisted she’d been partially blind for hours,) when they found her in a heap of tears and J.Crew, wrapped around a phone, laying on the floor of the foyer, inconsolable about her entire future and love life. Since this was before cell phones, they had to wait for Nana to arrive to explain the situation, and as Nana was a very caring grandmother, she insisted on coming with them to the emergency room. So Nana, Masie’s mom, Masie’s dad, Masie, and Masie’s phone buckled into the car and headed off to the hospital.
This was a circumstance where it kind of sucked to be so tall because everyone assumed that Masie was older and possibly more mature than she should have been expected to be. It also made walking through the ER doors with one eye super-glued shut and one hand super-glued to a phone, a little more embarrassing than had she looked a few years younger.
After a professional assessed the situation, it turned out that Masie would be ok and not have to live a life attached to a phone with one eye stuck shut. They managed to free her hand with major finagling and minor loss of skin. It also turned out that optometrists occasionally use super glue for eye surgery and that it caused no permeant damage to anything but her ego.
Masie didn’t get to go to the movies with Billy on her first date and instead got to go to the hospital with his Nana. They each went on to marry other people and are quite happy with their lives. But who knows what would have happened if it weren't for the super glue?