I knew my old “genuine knock-off” Ray Ban Aviator sunglasses had about outlived their usefulness when I put them on and one of the arms fell off. It was a little frustrating because I knew that my $6 USD polarized investment was reaching an end. I liked the style and for some reason, in the land of “alternatively manufactured products”, I was having problems finding a duplicate. I had invested four or five arduous minutes of shopping on the streets of Nyaungshwe, Myanmar when I came across a little shop with an old plastic carousel stand full of dusty, sunlight faded “Ray Bans, Maui Jim’s and Gucci’s” but none of them seemed just right.
I was carrying my broken pair of shades in my hands when the shop owner noticed and said he could fix them. I was a bit skeptical; I mean after all mine were precision instruments and given the condition of his products on display I wasn’t sure I could entrust him with such a delicate operation. But, he seemed confident and reluctantly I placed my precious $6 USD babies into his liver spotted hands. I offer him the detached arm but I could tell his mind was already on the surgery at hand and he dismissively waved me away.
I watched as he searched through drawer after drawer of name brand sunglass arms and finally came up with one that kind of matched the unbroken one. I think my close attention was annoying him so he quickly dispatched one his grandchildren to distract me by asking to have his picture taken and act cute. Grudgingly I relented and let the kid entertain me while grandpa worked. Finally, after and excruciatingly long ten minutes the suspense was over and he proudly showed me his Frankenstein repair.
Actually, it wasn’t too bad. Okay, the sides didn’t exactly match but during the repair he had straightened them and they fit better than ever before. After a bit of astute bargaining on my part I handed him about $1 USD and we shook hands. Turns out I didn’t need a new pair after all. I figured no one ever sees both sides of my head at the same time so the asymmetry couldn’t be detected. I have had the rehabilitated pair for about three months now and no one has noticed it (Or, at least mentioned it to my face.) Don’t tell anyone.