Wednesday, June 1, 2016


"Look at the stars,
Look how they shine for you,
And everything you do,
Yeah, they were all yellow."

Coldplay's song "Yellow" is romantic and wistful. It's unusual to see the color yellow connected to such a mellow sound. We typically think of yellow as bright and cheerful.

Or do we?

Yellow fever is not cheerful. Thousands of people in South America and Africa have died of yellow fever every year. Stupid mosquitos!!! The disease was so named because it does its worst damage to the liver, causing jaundice. The good news is that there is now a very effective vaccine.

But Yellow Tail wine is a wonderfully cheerful Australian wine. They've been sold in the USA since about 2001. And they've just released three sangria flavors that are delicious. The price point is doable too..

Coldplay's "Yellow" isn't the only musical representation of the color. I grew up hearing Harry Belafonte sing "Yellow Bird", about a lonely bird that represents the sadness of the singer. Donovan's "Mellow Yellow" was a popular song in my teenage years. Today's equivalent has to be Wiz Khalifa's "Black and Yellow." Then who can forget "Big Yellow Taxi" by Joni Mitchell? And if you never heard "Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polka Dot Bikini", well, you just haven't lived. But the greatest has to be "Yellow Submarine" which we all live in. We do! Honorable mention to Frank Zappa for his yellow snow warning. Thanks, Nanook.

Yellowstone National Park is one of the most beautiful places on the planet. Spectacular nature is abundant in the United States. Our national parks showcase our commitment to preserving natural places. For now, anyway. There will always be greedy men who would sign away the parks in exchange for a few bucks. That's why voting is so important. I've never been to Yellowstone. Soon.

Are you a reader? The Yellow Wallpaper was written by Charlotte Perkins Gilman. Published in 1892, it stands as an early example of the often cruel outcomes of patriarchy's insistence that women conform to very narrow roles. Although it reads as horror, its message is a simple reminder that women are human and need the same rich experiences that men crave. It was quite shocking in its day.

Minions!!! 'Nuff said.

Vincent Van Gogh apparently loved yellow. Several paintings focused on yellow hues, including his famous "Vase with Fifteen Sunflowers." Did you know that Van Gogh painted his sunflower series to decorate Paul Gauguin's bedroom in the house they shared in Arles? You can see the house in another Van Gogh painting called The Yellow House. And Gauguin was no stranger to the color. His "Yellow Christ" and "Parau api?" each feature the same wonderful yellow.

We'll close our yellow post with an interesting bit of trivia. Yellow pencils. When manufactured pencils first came into existence, the best were made with high grade graphite from China. To mark the pencils as superior, they were painted yellow, which was the color of royalty in China. Almost 200 years later, there are no royals remaining in China, but we still have plenty of yellow pencils.

I lied. Daffodils. I'd like to end with daffodils. And thanks to Jim Haesloop who taught me to love them.

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