Sunday, December 19, 2010

I miss Kamchatka.

My wife has decided to paint the house over the Christmas holidays. That in itself isn’t really blogworthy, because she has been painting the house for the past two years. It has been a piecemeal process since we moved in.
She loves to be busy and is inspired by challenges. I think that is why she married me. I have enough character flaws to keep her busy for a lifetime. 
When we moved into our home, I liked the colors that were on the walls. If I didn’t like the color of one room, I just moved to another. We were living in a crayon box. Each part of the house was demarced like the countries on a Risk board. I spent most of my time in Kamchatka, the kids played in Ural, and my wife liked read in Western Australia.

On my first deployment my wife discovered a coping strategy. She painted. When I came home my beloved Kamchatka was overrun by some Beige/Taupe hoard. She didn’t call it beige or taupe, it was “Pony Tail.”
Each time I went away the hoard returned. Soon, my home was a patchwork of beige. “Straw Hat” blitzkrieg the kitchen. “Lion’s Mane” conducted unspeakable atrocities to the the family room. The stairway and main foyer were rolled over by “Sand Stone.”
I tried to voice my concerns. Like the the United Nations, I suggested that we form a committee to study the color arrangements of the rooms and perhaps created some kind of framework for future considerations. 
My wife is a scholar of Sun Tsu’s “Art of War.” She knew her adversary and plotted accordingly. She ‘appeased me” by suggesting that she wouldn’t mind if I painted over what she had done. It was agreed. If I didn’t like the color of a room, I could paint it back.
It was a victory for me- or so I thought. Unfortunately, my apathy of color and my laziness of work trumped my desired to have a say. War is hell, and I didn’t even get a medal.
All these subtle tones of beige has caused me a bit of private grief. I can’t tell them apart, and I am wondering if these color shades are an elaborate practical joke. When new people come over to the house, my wife will take them on a tour and describe the color. Women in the tour will always smirk knowingly, and the men always rub their eyes.
In order for me to do my job, the government of Canada poked, prodded, and made me ‘turn my head and cough’ my way into a cockpit. They wouldn’t accept anything less that a ‘perfect physical specimen.” (Just to let you know, I laughed to myself when I typed that.) So, I should be able to tell the difference between “Snowflake skin” and “Moldy Walnut’. 
I do like this blue. I call it Eastern Passage Whooping Crane Dream.

This is a nice orange. I think it is called Beach Garbage Orange.

This is my favourite color of beige. It is called Weathered Pier.

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