Yesterday I was in the University of St Andrews Library and saw this Postgraduate Funding Guide:
As you may notice, the cover of this booklet features what looks like an Ishihara Colour Test. When I first saw the test I thought perhaps it could be some raillery, until a reliable source told me that there is in fact a ‘£’ visible within the circle. Unfortunately for me, a colour deficient, this circle of coins looks like nothing more than a circle of coins. ‘Struggling to find funding?’ For me, yes, in more ways than one, apparently. Thanks for the discouragement.
In all honesty, I found the minor episode to be slightly sad, though in a humourous way. It reminded me of my childhood. I recall the regular colourblind tests I had to take throughout my primary school years. The school nurse would open up a small book to reveal something like this:
What about this one?
And this one?
But then there’s this one:
What I find troubling is that through my research I even have difficulties with the figures that the red-green colour deficient are supposed to see. Look at this test:
Apparently the red-green colour deficient are supposed to see a ‘5’. I see something going on, but I can’t make myself see a ‘5’. ‘Normal’ folks and the more severely colour deficient see nothing. Perhaps it’s just the fault of my computer screen or the original image.
There have always been those rare though embarrassing occasions, like when I’ve painted the ‘wrong’ colour in a painting, or when someone asks me to hand them something green (like a pen) and I come up with something else, maybe something blue or brown. Then when the cat’s out of the bag people just start pointing to random things, ‘WHAT DOES THIS LOOK LIKE TO YOU?’ It looks like I’m a novelty.
I usually don’t realise all of the different colours in my clothing until someone points it out to me. I had a pair grey trousers for more than a year before someone told me that there was a hint of pink in them (‘Did you wash those with something red?’ I don’t know…). My mistake – your light green shirt looks yellow to me. I apologise if I compliment you on your blue jacket that is actually purple. I also apologise if I get your eye colour wrong. But in the end, colour deficiency hasn’t ruined my life and I’ve found that it is actually quite common (1% of males have my ‘condition’, deuteranopia). Still, if Prospects wants to appeal to us 300,000+ deuteranopian males in the UK with their Postgraduate Funding Guide, they should change their ad campaign.