Black and White


The majority of colorblind people face significant obstacles, the most universal and obvious being our often humorous inability to match clothing. Among the color inhibited, I experience the world’s visual exuberance on an even flatter plane, being almost, but not quite, completely colorblind.

I have been thoroughly tested by many specialists over the years. While some were eventually able to classify my deficiency, I pretty much failed every test… or that’s what it felt like…

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Color Separation

housepaintDrafting was my favorite class in high school. I took it all four years. While technically an elective, it was by no means an easy class. I enjoyed the challenge of meeting the high expectations of a very demanding instructor. I was something of a natural, and became quite good at drawing.

When a local businessman contacted the drafting department, offering some freelance work, the instructor recommended me. Continue reading

Water Colors

Pearl-Gourami-P-smlStarting in middle school, I became a tropical fish hobbyist. Not one to go half-in on anything, I gradually accumulated more than twenty aquariums in my bedroom. I bred, raised, and competed best-in-show gouramis. I coaxed varieties of catfish to breed that hadn’t previously spawned in captivity, which enabled me to start a business selling them to local stores. Continue reading

Feeling Blue

stackednewspapersMy father drove up to a convenience store, handed me some change, then asked me to run in and get a copy of the latest “Green Sheet”, which I found out later was what locals called the San Diego Tribune. Based upon his description, I assumed that the paper would be green (which, I’m told, it was). Not wanting to seem silly by asking for a more detailed description, I was confident I’d be able to pick out the right paper. I was fourteen. I certainly didn’t need help buying a newspaper. Continue reading


bonesSeveral decades ago, colorblindness tried to kill me…

My fingers were bones. Nothing more. Thin, knobby, reticulated mechanisms that generally moved at my command, but… they didn’t feel at all connected to me. I touched my hands together… and felt no flesh. I looked at them. My fingers looked longer than usual… and more like claws than fingers. Continue reading

Oops, it happened again

endoclipThis is the second attempt by colorblindness to kill me…

It started when I began feeling oddly dizzy in the evening. I was recovering from a bug, so thought nothing of it. Two hours later, I collapsed to the floor, unable to get up. I was panting, and completely disoriented. My wife called 911. Fortunately, the paramedics arrived within minutes. My blood pressure was dangerously low, so they rushed me to the hospital. Continue reading

A Single Shadow

558793​In my youth, I lived in a house with a tall pine tree in the front yard. Its base was about three feet in diameter. An expanse of coarse bark stretched from gnarled roots up more than forty feet, without a hint of foliage. There, a branch reached timidly out into the suburban sky. Only a handful of other limbs, sparsely needled, followed its lead for another fifty feet.

It was not a particularly attractive tree, but it did solidly convey its place in a history longer than that of the suburban homes around it.

Occasionally, on warm evenings…

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