Shaving

I like to say I shave once a week whether I need to or not. Of course, I should probably shave more often, but that is another topic completely. In the winter months, I grow a beard. It helps keep me warm and makes up a little for the lack of hair on the top of my head. Shaving has never been easy for me, between my lack of sight and psoriasis flare ups. It is tougher when you are trying to keep a beard intact.

Today, for the first time in a long, long time, I shaved with a manual razor. The Gillette Fusion ProShield, to be exact. My Braun Series 3 Cordless Electric Razor hit the tile floor last week and that was the end of that. I had a look around Amazon.com a few times during the week, but never had enough time to really look for a replacement. I figured I would just give a manual razor a try and picked the Fusion Proshield up when we took my mom to Target.

Once I went into the bathroom to shave, I started asking myself how I was going to do it. With an electric razor, I just keep shaving an area then feel for stubble. With a manual razor, I could shave an area, but with all the shaving cream on my face, how am I going to feel the stubble? More importantly, how was I going to get close to my beard without accidently shaving bits of it off? The answer: very carefully. As I lathered my neck up with the shaving cream, I remembered how much I didn’t like shaving with a manual razor. I shaved my lower neck area first, then got close to my jaw line. Once I finished, Eliz came in and checked it (which she does when I use an electric razor, too — I can only imagine missing a clump of hair and looking ridiculous.) She touched up a few places, as she also does when I shave with an electric razor. For the most part, though, it surprisingly went well.

I have to admit, I didn’t think I’d still have a beard when I finished shaving. I thought I would have taken too much of the beard off and then be forced to shave the entire beard off. I was surprised. That being said, I’ll be purchasing a new Braun electric razor in the next day or two.

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Socks

After I posted the Glaucoma Study entry, Eliz said that I should have talked a bit more about the socks task.  At the school where Eliz used to teach and our kids went, they would call this the Socks work.  It was work for me.  Here’s how it worked…  There were seven socks pinned to a board on a wall at eye level.  There was a table that was 30 x 60 up against the same wall that you could spread the 10 socks out on.  You then had to place the sock on the table under the correct match that was on the wall.

The first time I did this task, I was given the ground rules: I couldn’t touch the socks on the wall, I could get as close as I wanted, and, there was no time limit.  Most people had to this (and all the other tasks in the study) three times.  First time with both eyes, the second time with one eye covered, and the third time with the other eye covered.  I only had to do it (and all other tasks) twice since I have only the slightest vision in my right eye.  Believe me, 2x is enough.

I verified the ground rules with Maryanne before we started.  The last time I did this task the observer seemed to have a problem with the way I did this task.  She then started the clock and I began the task with my right eye covered.  It was covered from the last task and both Maryanne and I forgot to remove it.  I spread the socks out on the table, looking for the one I knew had no match.  It was easy to spot since it had cream or gray colored stripe near the top of the sock.  Now I just had to find the correct seven of the remaining nine and match them up.  So I hopped up on the table and zeroed in on a lighter gray sock on the board.  I found two socks that were similar in color and held them up close to the one on the board.  I could feel a pattern on one of the socks and knew that wasn’t the correct one.  I placed the other on the table beneath its mate.  This went on for about 18 minutes.  I missed two or three.

Now it was time for me to do it with both eyes.  It seemed silly for me to do it with both eyes, but at one of the other tasks I had done better with both eyes than with just my left, so I was up for seeing if it made a difference with this task.  I asked Maryanne to mix the socks up so that it would be a fair comparison.  She did and then started the timer.  I found the striped sock again and discarded it.  I hopped back onto the table and began matching.  This time it only took me about 11 minutes and I got ’em all!  I think that was the first time in the study that I matched them all correctly.  I was happy until I realized it took me about a minute and a half to match a pair of socks.

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