I live a double life.
“You’re a spy?”, you ask.
Sometimes I feel like I am spying on another world. My agency is called VT for short.
No, Hugo Chávez isn’t sending me orders from his grave.
I might as well be a ventriloquist. I seem to be speaking of things of another world.
Pakistan has the ISI. The Israelis have the Mossad. Pre-Revolutionary Iran had the Savak. The US has the CIA and the FBI.
My double life comes care of VT. It stands for Vision Therapy. It’s a mystery to those unfamiliar with uncoordinated eyes. Like the covert operatives working for those agencies, I see things that most people don’t see.
Spies search for little clues pointing them towards underworld operations or illegal activities. I look at small beads on a string to make them double and then single. If I’m lucky, I can get the string to double too and make a V into the little hole in the middle of the bead.
Spies may linger in a café or restaurant wearing dark glasses pretending to read the newspaper while observing their suspects and eavesdropping on their conversations. I may sit in a sidewalk café pretending to be people watching while my real endeavor is admiring the texture on the napkin. Wow! Did you notice the bumps, pattern and texture of this napkin? This is all new to me.
I have dark glasses too but they’re not the “sexy international man or women of mystery” variety. I can’t imagine James Bond sporting red-green lenses while wooing his heroine. I also pretend to read, but I don’t get to catch up on the latest gossip pages. I’ve already memorized the eye chart that I have to read with my dark shades with random black and red letters that appear in red and green. I look at the chart to see how many red and green letters I can see at once.
Spies speak in codes to keep their secrets. Codes? I’ve got codes. If you hear how many times I say “double, single, vertically misaligned, the clown has two noses now” to my doctor when I look at clown vectograms, you’d think I was speaking in code.
Spies live in a world where they can’t be sure what’s real and who else is a spy, a double agent or a fake. When you start to see the moon in double and your friend with two noses and three eyes, you too will wonder what is real.
Spies appear to be one thing but are indeed something else. If you look at my eyes, they look straight but they are not. I’m not who I appear to be.