Monday, June 06, 2005

are you an ugly color?

My newest sister-in-law used to live with me. Now she lives with my brother. But I don’t think she much appreciated the way I decorated. She was often after me to paint this or that—the fence, the living room, the ceiling. I gave in to her occasionally. But the point is—somehow I was seeing something she wasn’t seeing. My kitchen walls were peach. I imagined them to be white, because after all, that was what they were going to be. I even bought red, blue, and yellow dishtowels to match because that’s what color my kitchen was going to be. One day I came home from the Re-Use It Center with a cupboard that was painted yellow and I hung it onto the peach wall in my kitchen. As I stood back admiring it, my brother and my future sister-in-law commented. “Wow! That is so cool!”—my brother said as he opened the doors, to determine if everything functioned. “Isn’t it the ugliest thing you’ve ever seen.” my sister-in-law commented. “I’ll have to get some stripper for that paint,” I said, “the wood underneath will look amazing.”
I often see people like I see this cupboard. I’ll see the good wood underneath. I’ll appreciate its good function. I’ll even bring it into my house and install it in a place of honor. I’ll nod my head and agree with my sister-in-law—that it is really ugly. And I’ll talk about what to do about it. And as I use the cupboard, it’s not yellow to me, it’s the color I want it to be.

Please don't be offended if you need work.
The other day someone told me I had gained weight. I was offended. But I had to decide that being offended was a good thing. I was tremendously greatful. It helped me say no to the cookie I was offered today.


espíritu paz said...

A mentor/friend of mine once said that women often marry for the potential they see in a man. He said it was a really bad idea. I guess I'm in trouble because obviously I relate to people according to their potential, not according to their actual.

Peter. said...

Think I have the same reaction when seeing 'junk'. The ability to see through the dust, spinrag, chipped paint, etc. and see underlying beauty, craftsmanship, or what it can turn into with a bit of hard work or care. What others consider junk, I consider beautiful things that just need some work done :-)

Don't have the same thing with people though.

Peter. said...

My last line isn't entirely true, I realize now. Let's say I have it ess with people than things.


On ne voit bien qu'avec le coeur, l'essentiel est invisible pour les yeux. (Saint-Exupéry)