My wife and I were driving along, peacefully enjoying
the pastoral scenery, when the song "Brown-Eyed Girl" came on
Everyone knows that song. Recorded by Van Morrison in
1967, it's an oldie but goodie, and I even knew some of the words. So
naturally I started singing along.
"Hey where did we go, days when the rain came…down
by the hollow, playing a new game…..and you (this is where I look at her
and point lovingly), my brown-eyed girl."
She wasn't impressed. My singing was bad enough, but
apparently there was more. Much more.
"My eyes aren't brown, you knucklehead."
That kind of put an end to the festivities. I was pretty darn sure she had
brown eyes when I was belting out the song. But I confess I wasn't 100%
confident when I pointed at her. I just decided to take the chance and go
"They aren't?" I stupidly asked. "What color
"You've known me for 40 years and you don't know the
color of my eyes? That's pathetic."
I wasn't sure where to go with a response, so I tried the
attack mode. "You know I'm red-green blind, which affects 1 out of
every 5 Caucasian males. It's not fair for you to belittle my
That didn't work. She was genuinely offended that I couldn't
remember the color of her eyes. I tried staring deep into them, but that
made her even angrier, mainly because I was driving.
Nevertheless, I caught a good peek….and saw pretty much
nothing. I ruled out blue and yellow, though, because I can see those
colors just fine. But the jury was completely out on green, brown, red,
taupe or magenta.
I turned off the radio, and tried to remember the only other
song about colored eyes I knew. I figured since she didn't have brown
eyes, my best chance was to go with the other most common color that
"Green-eyed lady, lovely lady," I tentatively sang,
looking at her like the puppy dog I was. No response. I tried the other
verse I knew. "Green-eyed lady, lovely lady." (I'm not too good
at remembering words to songs).
"I don't have green eyes," she mumbled, looking
Damnit!! I was quickly running out of colors. In fact, I was
pretty much done. My only hope was to show her I was equally pathetic with
"I don't even know the color of our children's
eyes," I admitted. "It's just something I never notice."
"I bet you know the color of your eyes," she
I thought about my beautiful baby blue gems. No one was too
color blind to notice those babies. "It's written on my driver's
license," I explained. "That's the only reason I know they're
This was going nowhere. She was genuinely irritated that I
didn't know the color of her eyes, and she refused to tell me. We rode in
silence for awhile as she continued to look forlornly out the passenger
window with her beautiful whatever-colored eyes.
I decided to make it my mission to find out. She was right. A
husband should know the color of his wife's eyes, even if he could care
less. When we got home, my first call was to one of our daughters.
"What color are your Mom's eyes?" I asked.
"You're kidding," she responded. "How could
you not know?"
"Because I'm color blind, that's why. How come everyone
wants to make fun of my disability?"
"They're hazel. I've got to go. Look it up."
Hazel. What the hell is hazel? I have enough trouble with
red, green and brown. Now I have to learn hazel?
I googled hazel and quickly discovered I had been bamboozled.
Hazel is a mixture of green and brown, sometimes called a golden brown. I
was not happy.
"I was right!!!" I cried, storming into the kitchen
where my wife sat reading the paper with her green-brown eyes. "You
do have brown eyes. I just forgot to add the 'golden' part."
One quick look and I forgot all about colors. I just called
them dagger eyes.