Consider the breathtakingly ingenious piece of bio-engineering that is the common eyeball. It allows us to see and identify everything from pockmarks on the moon to the fine print on an Aspirin bottle. It speckles our language with irreplaceable phrases – we 'see eye to eye' or we can turn an eye that is blind, jaundiced, kind or cold. We put eyes in our needles and eyes in our hurricanes. We rate our own ocular prowess on a spectrum that runs from 'eyes like a hawk' to 'blind as a bat'.
The human eye is a profoundly delicate organ so intricate and finely calibrated we ought to go about with the upper part of our heads encased in bubble wrap, but we don't. We junk them up with mascara and eyeliner; we clutter them with contact lenses – plastic vanity discs that ride the eyeball like miniature manhole covers.
In Chengdu, China there is a barber who, for a fee, will run a razor across the inside of your eyelid, then 'massage' the lids with a thin metal prod. It's reputed to relieve 'dryness' in the eye socket.
Pass me on that.
And South Korea? It is the cosmetic eye surgery capital of the world. An astonishing number of South Korean women want to have 'Western' eyes like Suzanne Somers, not Asiatic ones like Suzie Wong. They go under the knife to achieve it. In a recent competition twenty young female contestants vied for the title of Miss South Korea. All twenty had 'westernized' eyes.
We're into some pretty eye-popping modifications on this side of the water, too. Take the case of Rodrigo Fernando dos Santos of Sao Paolo, Brazil. You'd recognize Rodrigo from twenty feet away – he's a walking tattoo. Virtually every visible square inch of his body is inked and needled.
And yes, that now includes his eyeballs.
Recently, Mister dos Santos engaged the services of a tattoo artist Rafael Leao Dias to ink in the last two areas of his body that were tattoo-free.
It's not easy to tattoo an eyeball. The tattooist must inject the ink precisely between the conjunctiva and sclera layers – one slip and the patient is qualified to be fitted for a white cane. It's not a romp in the daisies for the recipient either. “I cried ink for two days” says dos Santos.
But hey...what price art?
Mister dos Santos now sports eyeballs that have no white in them – just two dark pools of ink.
Must be quite a turn-on.
I suppose I wouldn't have to 'black out' my eyeballs if I got them tattooed. I could have polka dots maybe, or tiny tattooed teardrops. How about teensy weensy bumper sticker sayings like “EYE HEART U” or “CRY ME A RIVER”?
Could I see my way clear to do something like that?
Yeah. In a pig's eye.