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For over 14 years, Philip DiMeo, a talented cartoonist and social worker, led a double life, masquerading as a fully sighted person, while becoming blind. What prompted him to hide his condition? Pride, and fear that if his impending blindness were discovered he would lose all that was important.
He concealed his vision loss, a secret that he believed could potentially ruin his life, but in hindsight opened doors. At most social functions, fearful that he would trip, bump into someone, or knock something over, his wife propelled him around. Ignoring warnings from his ophthalmologist, he continued driving despite a series of auto accidents which included driving onto railroad tracks while an oncoming train approached. Philip reveals that, despite diagnoses by three ophthalmologists and three optometrists, he denied having retinitis pigmentosa, an inherited degenerative eye disease that causes severe vision impairment and often blindness.
When Philip finally confronted his disability, he found that the challenges of his vision loss were the springboard to achievements to come. Binoculars is a sensitive, amazing, and astonishingly revealing first-hand account of a man who achieves incredible feats with his courage and talent, while finally coming to terms with his blindness
Philip F. DiMeo is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and former cartoonist for The Post, Crossroads, Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel and the Vietnam Veteran’s newspaper, The Honey Bucket, and one time social worker for Milwaukee County Children’s Protective Services. Despite the challenges presented by blindness, he hasn’t let it limit him: he is the coach of Kelly’s Bleachers, the most successful co-ed softball team in Milwaukee history and continues to draw cartoons with the aid of adaptive equipment. He resides in Wauwatosa, WI.