[DWJ] colour sight (was Introductions)

Irina Rempt irina at valdyas.org
Wed Jun 20 05:49:40 EDT 2007

On Wednesday 20 June 2007, Minnow wrote:

> I was very excited when I discovered during the 1960s and during one of my
> many bouts of stay-in-bed illness that my eyes saw slightly different
> colours if I looked at a white sheet using first one and then the other.  I
> felt Special and Different for a bit, but I was then told by some rotten
> spoilsport that this is actually very common.  

Two to three per cent of women are true tetrachromats (i.e. have one abnormal 
X chromosome). Obviously, it doesn't occur in men: if they have that X 
chromosome they're (partially) colour-blind, because they don't have the 
other X chromosome with the normal colour-seeing gene on it. 

> I'm not sure I wasn't even 
> told that it is so common it's  actually Normal.  It does seem to be part
> of the standard testing they do in the opticians.
> Bah.

My optician tested it and pronounced me Not Entirely Normal but Not Uncommon. 
He also told me that if I wanted it adjusted, I could have slightly different 
contact lenses, but (a) it doesn't bother me, I actually like it; and (b) I 
hate having things in my eyes, I'd rather have things in front of my eyes.

> No colour-blindness in my family tree that I have ever heard mentioned, so
> in my case it's not likely to be related to that.  I do dream mostly in
> colour, but that wouldn't be anything to do with actual eyesight, I don't
> suppose.

That seems to be related to vitamin B levels: to dream in colour you need a 
sufficient amount of vitamin B. I've always dreamed in colour, too, but as 
far as I know I've never been vitamin B deficient, so I couldn't know.


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