I didn’t get to use this technique until I was 25. I was working on my doctorate, and I was teaching part-time at a community college. I was talking about some essay or short story, I don’t remember what, and I took off my glasses to make a point. My moment had finally come, and I was going to feel like a true English professor. But before I could finish my point, a student in the back asked a question. I say “a student” very purposefully here, as I did not know who asked the question; I was and am quite nearsighted. Thus, I could still read texts up close without my glasses, but I could not see beyond the first row of desks with any kind of clarity. Even though I was looking toward the back of the room, I could not see who was speaking. Since I was so confused by who was talking, I didn’t even hear the question. I simply put my glasses back on, then responded, “I’m sorry. What was that question?” Once I knew who was speaking, I answered the question and went on with class. I’ve never tried that gesture again, though I’ve told this story to my students over the years. They’re amused by it, which is good, as that’s the point. Yet, what I ultimately realized is that I didn’t need the gesture. I just needed to be the teacher I was meant to be, not try to imitate my professor. My glasses do make me look more like an English professor, though. At least, that’s what people tell me.