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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000832.txt from 1999/04

Subj: Re: [kl] Progressive lenses (was RE: Speaking of diaphrams)
Date: Sun, 18 Apr 1999 15:55:27 -0400

In a message dated 4/18/99 6:02:37 AM, writes:

<<A more serious problem for me is that I suffer from a lot of 'floaters'
in my eyes, little fuzzy blobs that drift about as I move my eyes and
can blur my vision slightly if they drift into my line of sight. If
this happens just as I reach a tricky passage it can be disastrous, and
would be a major problem if I was trying to earn a living with my
clarinet. The only solution seems to be to learn anything risky off by
heart (which can be beneficial anyway).>>

John, I, too, have the problem you describe. The clinical name for my
condition is "vitreous detachment." It started a couple of years ago at a
time that I was under a lot of stress. I even recall the moment it happened
for the first time. My eye doctor disputes that stress is a cause and
contends that "these things just happen." He also says "there is nothing you
can do about it but it will drive you crazy." Comforting, huh?

It's very frustrating for me to play music in rooms with a lot of glare so I
avoid positioning my stand near a window. As you describe, everything will be
going gangbusters and then FOG BANK across the field of vision. Fortunately,
I try to know my music well enough by the time I play it in public that I can
"noodle" through my part during these episodes. Otherwise, I would almost
certainly need some of those beta blockers that were discussed recently in
another thread ;-)

Another reason to know your music well: last summer a friend and I were
playing a Mozart minuet or something for a private party. The partygoers
decided it would be "romantic" to turn the lights out. I don't know how we
did it but we played the rest of the piece perfectly by little more than
candlelight. It is times like this that I know I have a guardian angel
because I am just not THAT competent.


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