You know the situation that happens when you’re looking for something and can’t find it, no matter how hard you look, only to figure out after five minutes that the “lost” object was exactly where you thought it was, right in front of your face?  That happened to me this morning.

I was running late getting myself ready after waking up five times to my alarm because I was having a very strange dream involving a dreambear inside of the living room of my dreamhouse, which was a very old, neat house, and my attempts to keep my four (!) dreamcats out of the dreambear-infested room.  So I woke up (finally) during the fifth iteration of the sleep alarm beepings, realized I was running late, groaned, swore, threw myself through a shower and so on.  Everything was going fine (lateness aside) until I couldn’t find my deodorant.

What happened is this:  I mentally pictured the deodorant (tube? container? package? whatever) sitting on the counter:  white packaging, spring-ish green top.  And I looked.  And looked.  And looked.  And I thought “I don’t have time for this.”  And I got irritated and wondered if one of the cats had knocked it onto the carpet.

The deodorant was nowhere to be seen.

And then I thought very clearly about where I always put the deodorant when I’ve finished using it and peered very closely at that spot on the counter. 

Lo and behold!  My deodorant was exactly where I thought it was.  The problem:  I switched deodorants a few weeks ago and the tube/container/package/whatever is now cream rather than white.  The entire problem that I had, for five solid minutes, was based on the fact that I was looking for the wrong color.

So after thinking about this situation this morning during the sermon at church, I’ve come to a theory:  when I’m unable to find something and it’s sitting in plain sight, my inability to find said object is because I’ve become selectively colorblind, thus rendering the lost object invisible.  My issue this morning is that I was looking for white, thus rendering me blind to the yellowbrown undertone that changed the white container into the cream-colored one I *should* have been looking for.

My Theory of Selective Colorblindness could apply to most lost objects.  Lost keys?  Colorblind to silver.  Lost pen?  Colorblind to white and blue (or whatever color(s) your pen happen(s) to be).  Lost glasses?  Probably just blind, period.  But you get the idea (I hope).  I doubt recognizing this problem is going to help me find anything any more quickly anytime in the future, but at least it can help explain why I can see the “lost” object six-ten times before it registers in my brain that the thing I’m looking for and the thing I’m looking at are, in fact, the very same thing.