When Mr. Bella was first courting me, he went on and on about my eyes. "They change color depending on your mood," he said. I smiled at the sweetness but insisted that such a thing was impossible, that any perceived shift in color was due to him needing an eye exam. I mean, I'm hardly an ocular mood ring. This became one of those cutesy couple "arguments" that we had again and again.
One thing was for certain: My eyes were much greener than they'd been when I was growing up as a blue-eyed girl. What was going on? To get to the bottom of this, I approached Jacque L. Duncan, M.D., Department of Ophthalmology, University of California, San Francisco. "Some loss of iris pigment occurs with age," she said. Fair enough. But what about the alleged color shift depending on mood? I suspected it was due to different lighting, and Duncan cleared that up. "The iris sometimes tends to reflect colors that surround it," she explained. "I think your thought about different light is closest to the truth." I love being right, but I like romance even more, so I might just file this away in the "I was right" files rather than squash Mr. Bella's romantic eye-praising.