Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The house of colors

You have to start somewhere. And I heard this thing, it was on the radio. I was driving on route 14 and I remember my hand moving up and down on the steering wheel thinking it felt soft and alive like somebody's cheek against the back of my hand. How absurd. The program on the radio was about colors. How the blue sleeping pill placebo will put you to sleep but the red one will be ineffective. Variables accounted for, extensive research, significant margins and all that.

It got me thinking about how to make things better by starting with the most basic things.

Maybe it's a little like believing in magic. But I'd rather call it psychology so let's call it that.

When I went to this country:

with these people:

I was really happy. Not always, but most of the time. Variables accounted for, extensive research, significant margins and all that.

There were colors all over the place. Chile is an unreasonably colorful country. When I close my eyes I can remember those colors and being underwater and very little more. But the colors are all encompassing; everything falls inside of them and fits.

I am sitting here thinking about being an adult in America, and how it means streamlining your wardrobe into black and grey, professional and serious. Wobbling between rooms that are cream and eggshell, shades of beige all polite and understated. Graffiti grows like unwanted weeds on the walls in the city as you kick away the pieces of creativity in your head to make room for all the quantitative that must take up residence.

I am thinking about what it means to be an adult. It means doing things with a person and then pretending that it never happened. When you are a teenager you are utterly incapable of this. In college you are figuring it out, trying to master this skill and it hurts like hell. And you know when you are an adult, because you really can pretend that nothing happened. You don't even really have to pretend. Because you really feel nothing.

Think back to the blue that put you to sleep and the red that leaves you kicking at your sheets. I'm moving North soon to a place where my score at the present moment is as such:

friends: 0
job: 0
place to live: 0

This I've never done before. I've always had at least one of these things, why else would you move somewhere?

I'm moving North with an accumulated score of: 0. And fall has already come, fall is bedazzling but brief. And when autumn is over, winter side steps in, and winter is white. White and black, and that's the good part of winter. The rest is just grey, the color of ash on snow. I'm worried about myself living in this:

And I'm asking you what to do. Paint the walls of my house the color of tropical fruit, pay extra attention to the color of bedsheets which will either put me to sleep or keep me awake, or better yet attract people to my bed or repel them, not that I'm ready to deal with that yet. Should I wear only jewel tones and drape myself in scarves and beads, and constantly keep the music on and every day wake up with the goal set firmly in my mind that I will keep the driveway cleared of snow, and brush away the powder from the road signs, and get on with it?

Or should I just give in, be white for a season, disappear into the center of the zero, the alabaster of rural snow.

I don't know what will help and what won't. What is worth the effort because after all, we only have so much. What do you think. And where are you going to be, this winter?

1 comment:

Cassandra said...

I love that you let the colored boxes tell most of the story. Fascinating!