The Blog

· November 24th, 2020

TO READ · 06/05/2015

Every Day is Commencement Day

It’s not often that you get to wear a gown and funny hat in public, and to celebrate your achievements, and to raise a toast to the future. This is what happens on Commencement Day. Graduating from anything—elementary school, high school, and beyond—is a special occasion.

It’s not often that you get to wear a gown and funny hat in public, and to celebrate your achievements, and to raise a toast to the future. This is what happens on Commencement Day. Graduating from anything—elementary school, high school, and beyond—is a special occasion.

This year, our co-CEOs Neil and Dave were honored (so honored!) to give a commencement speech to the graduating class of their alma mater, at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. Students of the graduating class were surprised with a pair of Warby Parker sunglasses, Oprah-style, and soaked up a few words of wisdom from Neil and Dave, before being unleashed upon the world.

(Congratulations, class of 2015! Go get ‘em, tigers and tigresses.)

If you’d like to soak up a little wisdom yourself, we’re sharing a few core nuggets from the commencement speech right here. Here, unedited, are 7 Life Lessons from Neil and Dave, who learned them all the hard way.

Lesson #1: All you need is friends.
Whether you’re earning a degree or building a business, it’s rare that we remember the moments of triumph. Far more often, we remember the moments of blind panic and comic relief. And the people who helped get us through them.

Lesson #2: Treat others the way they want to be treated.
This is similar to the golden rule, but not quite! It’s a good thing to “treat others the way you’d like to be treated”, but people are complex and different, and empathy is everything. Try hard to understand the people you engage with.

Lesson #3: Go easy on jargon.
Nobody knows what a 360º review is. “Circling up” is for kindergarteners. There’s no need to “shoot” anyone an email—you can just send it. It’ll get there just as fast.

Lesson #4: “No” is an excellent word.
Use it a lot. Use it respectfully. From a business standpoint, strategy is what you don’t do. From a personal happiness perspective, saying “no” to the wrong people will allow you time to say “yes” to the right people. (See lesson #1!)

Lesson #5: Dream big, fail small.
Take small steps, not big leaps. As the classic 1983 martial arts movie Shaolin and Wu Tang put it: “You must think first before you move.”

Lesson #6: Presume positive intent.
It’s human nature to assume the worst. Try not to do it. Believing the worst makes you cynical, and cynicism kills innovation. If you can’t presume positive intent, you might be hanging out with the wrong crowd.

Lesson #7: Always be tired.
If you’re not intellectually tired, you’re not tackling hard enough problems. If you’re not physically tired, you’re not squeezing every drop out of your day. Your eyes should already be closing in that one second before your head hits the pillow each night. That’s the right amount of tired.

Photo by Shira Yudkoff

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TO BUY · 05/29/2015

We Spy: Ginger Crystal

Hello Friday! Don’t mind us: we’re getting a head start on absorbing as much weekend goodness as possible.

Hello Friday! Don’t mind us: we’re getting a head start on absorbing as much weekend goodness as possible. Nothing says Saturday and Sunday—summer, really—like Banks in the tasty Ginger Crystal. Its wide, graphic shape keeps your relaxation game tight.

Show us what you’re up to this season with #seesummerbetter.

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TO BUY · 05/22/2015

We Spy: Striped Pacific

Although we love all our frames equally, this new number from our Summer Collection is especially bringing all the good feelings.

Although we love all our frames equally, this new number from our Summer Collection is especially bringing all the good feelings.

Seen here in a coast-inspired Striped Pacific, Bates, a super-sharp pair of sunglasses, has us all warm and tingly inside. Don’t mind that a bit even though we’d kill for some A.C. right about now.

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TO READ · 05/19/2015

To Read: Do You Want to Be Somewhere Else?

Want to get away, but (almost) out of vacation days? Travel far without ever leaving your desk.

Just don’t let the boss catch you.

Want to get away, but (almost) out of vacation days? Travel far without ever leaving your desk.

Just don’t let the boss catch you.

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TO BUY · 05/12/2015

Our Summer Collection is here!

Summer is nothing but fun. It’s time for barbecuing, cannonballing, road-tripping—and all those other good-time activities we’ve been anticipating. Maximize your moves with our just-in Summer Collection.

Summer is nothing but fun. It’s time for barbecuing, cannonballing, road-tripping—and all those other good-time activities we’ve been anticipating. Maximize your moves with our just-in Summer Collection.

Two lively new shades, Sea Green Crystal and Ginger Crystal, round out a sunny lineup of old favorites including Root Beer, Moonstone, and other hues inspired by the most delectable parts of the season. Existing shapes Haskell and Chamberlain are lightening up in Crystal, and a cluster of current silhouettes are being reintroduced in new-to-them colorways.

Crafted from premium acetate, new eyewear shapes Stockton, Clark, Orson, Oxley, and June bring a lot to the party, wherever it may be. We’re *especially* excited to introduce new sunglasses Bates and Buckley; noticeably distinct in their own way, each frame’s undersized titanium rims and acetate brow are an unbeatable way to make a statement.

More surprises to come!

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TO BUY · 05/05/2015

Chicago, We’re Here!

Don’t know if you’ve heard, but we’ve been making some moves in Chicago.

Don’t know if you’ve heard, but we’ve been making some moves in Chicago.

We closed our Frame Studio (moved it down to New Orleans) and reopened a new space a couple doors down on W. Armitage. Now that we’ve had a couple weeks to get situated, here’s a little peek inside the space.

Grab a custom (and free!) map of the best spots to sit and read a book around the neighborhood, illustrated by our friend, artist, and Taco Bell enthusiast Jason Polan.

WarbyChicagoArmitageFinal-9069-PRG

Behind the Reference Desk, scenes of Chicago from screenwriter and cartoonist Daniel Clowes’s (the brains behind Ghost World and a zillion other clever works) childhood memories, “East View” and “West View,” are on display. Is that Roger Ebert we spy? All signs point to yes.

WarbyChicagoArmitageFinal-8882-PRG

See you soon!

851 W. Armitage Avenue
Chicago, IL 60614
773.341.1890

Daily 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Book your eye exam at W. Armitage.

Photos by Sara Essex Bradley

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TO READ · 04/28/2015

A Literary Guide to New Orleans

We’ve assembled a little roster of books—criteria: strong relationship to Louisiana, entertaining—to familiarize ourselves (and you too) with our new home down South. Behold: five books that ooze New Orleans.

We’ve assembled a little roster of books—criteria: strong relationship to Louisiana, entertaining—to familiarize ourselves (and you too) with our new home down South. Behold: five books that ooze New Orleans.

John Kennedy Toole’s A Confederacy of Dunces

Over a decade after Toole’s death, fellow Louisiana writer Walker Percy (more on him in a second) championed the book’s publication and it went on to win a Pulitzer. We’ve expressed our affection for Toole’s New Orleans-centered novel before but it bears repeating: this is an extremely funny book.

Walker Percy’s The Moviegoer

A classic book about indecision in the French Quarter and beyond

Truman Capote‘s Other Voices, Other Rooms

After his mother dies, 13-year-old Joel Knox is sent away from his home in New Orleans (where the author spent a good amount of time) to live with a father he doesn’t know. It’s a pretty lonesome setup, but Capote—who published this at 23!—gives Joel an ensemble cast of outlandish-bordering on-implausible characters to round out his new home.

Dave Eggers‘s Zeitoun

Please don’t Google this non-fiction book before reading, we mean it. (After though, go nuts. The story gets weird—very sad too. Certainly stranger than fiction.) After Abdulrahman Zeitoun decides to stick around New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina, his efforts to help his neighbors after the storm catch the attention of the National Guard in a not-so-good way.

Michael Lewis’s Liar’s Poker

NOLA native Lewis has made a nice name for himself as a financial journalist, having proven to many right brains that money markets and financial matters are fascinating. Here’s where to start with the Lewis canon.

The Collected Plays of Tennessee Williams

If there’s another author more synonymous with New Orleans, then we’ve left ‘em off this list. The legacy remains so strong that New Orleans hosts the Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival every year around the author’s birthday. 

 

Illustration: Gianna Meola

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