Wednesday, May 18, 2016

my favorite color and why

Purple. I've always loved purple. Purple was an unusual clothing choice when I was young. Only my hippy friends wore purple. So I associated the color with freedom of expression and a let it all hang out mentality. When I wore purple, I felt zany and happy. I can still remember specific items of purple clothing from that time period.

The first time I read the poem "Warning" by Jenny Joseph, I recognized myself, except for the part about the sobriety of my youth. I don't think I had a particularly sober youth. But I loved the idea of doing unexpected things as an older woman. My best friend actually bought me a framed copy of the poem done in calligraphy.

I decided I would buy an entire purple wardrobe, one piece at a time, tossing my non-purple things along the way. I figured by the time I was forty, I'd be known as The Purple Lady. I liked that thought. I imagined myself as Auntie Mame - in purple.

But then that poem was used as the basis for the Red Hat Ladies craze that swept the country. You'd see groups of older ladies in restaurants, all wearing purple outfits and red hats. I gave up my all purple idea. It would hardly be a signature look if half the country was doing it. But it made me sad.

There is one other choice that appealed to me. Paisley. I liked the look on people's faces when I gave that as an answer for the favorite color question. It was unexpected. I actually heard it in song lyrics. Carole King? Melissa Manchester? I've looked for it, but couldn't find who sang "Paisley is my color." But I appreciated the intent.

I'm a kaleidoscope. My internal colors change. So paisley suits me with its swirl and its endless color combination possibilities. But an entire wardrobe of paisley? I'm not quite zany enough to pull that off. But I can imagine at least one or two items in purple paisley.

I'll just have to wait out the Red Hat Ladies. I'll reclaim purple when I'm older.

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