Like 1 in 12 men worldwide, my husband is Color blind. I suppose this is a drag for him, but really it's more my problem than his. He is constantly asking me to help choose shirts and jackets and pants that "go together" when we are dressing to go out, a service I willingly perform, yet is no help at all in telling me whether the red I used in my latest painting is too pink or not pink enough, or what color to paint our house. (I've got it down to lilac or goldenrod.) And while it's certainly better than if he were totally blind and needed my help in even more ways, he's not, so the problems I confront regarding his visionary deficits rise to the top. And of course when Mitch tells me he loves my latest hair color, his compliment is, to put it bluntly, worthless.
I've come to understand that just like color blindness, some people are language blind. For example, yesterday a young woman behind me at the supermarket checkout was busy cooing to her infant, hidden inside a baby carrier. I leaned over to take a peek and saw what looked like a perfect little doll straight from the Mattel factory. With huge, literally baby blue eyes, and flashing a big, toothless grin, he didn't make a sound but, like a dog wagging its tail, his kicking feet telegraphed his obvious delight. I complimented the woman on her beautiful child and asked, "Is he always this happy?" She smiled and replied, "I don't know, this is my first child."
I smiled in return and spent most of my drive home wondering what she possibly could have thought I had asked.