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29 February 2012

A sampling of personality Tonight I was buying paint samples at Home Depot.[More:]

I was standing at the paint counter, wearing spring my green parka with a dark teal hoodie underneath and my red hair was probably in some state of disarray given that I'd been out in the rain (not that I'm ever all that smartly coiffed, admittedly). Next to me stood a pair of chic urbanites, both sporting sleek black hair and black wool pea coats. The woman was holding a sheaf of paint chips, all in a daring range of shades of gray.

The Home Depot employee brought over my samples, unscrewed the lids, and announced, "Teal Zeal... and... Asparagas." Both of those colours look exactly as their names indicate. The black pea-coated couple looked at the samples and blinked. I thought, "Man, I look like some bizarre artsy type. Well, I like those colours, so chin up."

Then the woman spoke and said to me, "Man, we are SO BORING with our four shades of gray."
Was this said in a snotty tone of voice? If so,I would have asked her what made her think she was such a prize.
posted by brujita 29 February | 23:21
Heh. Did you grin and shrug? That's my usual response. Or a chirpy "yep, sure are!"

I find that it's always best to assume the best of people, and in this case, to assume they were being self deprecating (sounds like it, from the way you've described it?) and tease them right back.
posted by gaspode 01 March | 01:02
"and... Asparagas." Local Asparagus season is fast approaching and now I am hungry and I want to paint my office green. (The porch off the office already has Asparagus green.)
posted by arse_hat 01 March | 01:06
Sounds to me as though they were being self-deprecating. I think her comment might have cheered me up, & can't imagine it warranted a response such as brujita suggests unless the monochrome woman really was being egregiously snotty.

I want to paint my spare bedroom in Teal Zeal. But I will probably paint it white instead.
posted by altolinguistic 01 March | 06:30
The bones of my place are beige beige beige and it's not a happy thing. Your colors sound so delightful! I'm green with envy.

posted by mightshould 01 March | 06:55
(not that I'm ever all that smartly coiffed, admittedly)

LIES you stone fox, you.
posted by Eideteker 01 March | 08:42
"There's gotta be some grey in the world, it all evens out man." / Dude
posted by Meatbomb 01 March | 09:53
:) This story makes me laugh, cause when my Guy bought his condo, he asked me to pick paint. And I picked. . . . 9 shades of grey, one crimson and one navy. Undoubtedly, I picked them out wearing a black wool coat.

What rooms are you painting? Teal zeal sound nice.
posted by crush-onastick 01 March | 10:00
The woman was definitely not being snotty. She also said something about how brave I was to go with those colours, and I in turn said something about how hard it can be to get just the right neutral tone — when I was doing my hallways taupe, I painted them three times over.

I just thought it was funny that well they were making me feel... inelegant, perhaps even a little tacky, I was making them feel boring.

These samples are actually not going on the walls (though my living room is painted "Sea Life", which is similar to the Teal Zeal). I'm using them to do some detailing on a cute yet delapidated Art Deco chair that was in the house when I bought it, and to do some stencilling on a wooden box.

Nine shades of gray! Heh! I'm sure it looked very smart, though. I admire that cool, urban palette, and if I were to decorate someone's place I could probably put together something sharply modern and understated if that was what they wanted.... but I wouldn't want to do my own home that way. I love colour and lots of visual detail.
posted by Orange Swan 01 March | 10:44
I just thought it was funny that well they were making me feel... inelegant, perhaps even a little tacky, I was making them feel boring.

YES! This is a pretty common phenomenon, since we all live inside our own heads and can only compare our interior to other peoples' exteriors.

Your color choices sound fabulous! Now that you mention they're for accents, I'm curious about your wall colors. Ever since visiting a friend's new home and standing in a doorway where I could see the bell-pepper red living room, rich orange kitchen, and deep leafy green hallway, all braced with bright white trim, I've looked forward to living somewhere I could paint in rich, deep colors.
posted by Elsa 01 March | 13:21
I wish you guys would come paint my walls -- they've needed it ever since I bought the house, but I am just plain no good at picking out colors.
posted by JanetLand 01 March | 14:39
Post photos and ask for some suggestions, JanetLand. I'm sure everyone here will fall all over themselves telling you what they'd like to see done with your house.;-)
posted by Orange Swan 01 March | 15:04
JL, could you try out sample shades? I remember my mother painting three swatches onto our living room wall and thinking them over for a few weeks before she committed to a particular shade.

I'm a renter, so we're stuck with off-white. (Blank, boring eggshell actually works out fine since we ended up buying a candy-apple red sofa a few years ago and now the whole living room is awash in bright colors.) As long-term tenants, I suppooooooooose we could persuade the owners to let us paint, but I don't think we'll bother 'til we own our own place.
posted by Elsa 01 March | 15:23
I think a future Photo Friday theme could be Wall Colors. Like Elsa, I'm a bit sad to be a renter, but I'm happy we landed a place with lively walls. One bedroom is a lovely dark teal, another is a cheery yellow.
posted by filthy light thief 01 March | 15:30
I'm inclined to the positive interpretation of that exchange. I hope you all came away from it gently amused.

The place where I live now has plain dazzling white walls, but that's because the ceiling is all redwood beams and there are Turkish and Moroccan rugs and pillows all over the place plus zillions of books (many of which are old Penguins with orange spines) so otherwise it'd be completely exhausting in there.

Sometimes I miss the lurid coral wall in my old place.

posted by tangerine 01 March | 16:44
My walls are the standard UK colour - magnolia. It's a very pale yellow and couldn't offend anyone, really. But I like the neutral shade, particularly as my rooms are small. I use colour in the curtains, rugs, cushions, etc., which I can change more easily than painting the walls.
posted by Senyar 01 March | 16:51
I agree with Senyar's philosophy -- I hate painting and it'll be easier to change out the colors. I'm rather miffed at myself for painting the spare bedroom a sage green instead of beige like the rest of the house as I no longer like the green and need to repaint the room.

I, however, love my cheerful light yellow den (previously known as my dining room), which was an awful pale pink when I brought the house, and my lovely blue bedroom.
posted by bluesapphires 01 March | 17:36
Orange Swan, it sounds like your paint colors matched your parka/hoodie combination!
posted by fancyoats 01 March | 18:39
just thought it was funny that well they were making me feel... inelegant, perhaps even a little tacky, I was making them feel boring.

Over the past couple of years, particularly because of certain events and exhibitions at work, I've had occasion to observe that sometimes it's the most elegant-seeming people who feel, inside, the most stifled by requirements and expectations. They have done so well at following all the rules, getting the de rigeur haircut and clothing (by whomever's definition), pursuing the "done" thing, that when someone chooses another path and is not struck by lightning on the spot, it can seem strangely freeing and liberating to them just to consider being that way.

Take it as a compliment. You reminded someone that beige and grey are not the world's only meaningful colors. If that is "brave" to those folks, so be it. Be brave. As a self-involved, impractical romantic once said, "Thou canst not then be false to any man."
posted by Miko 02 March | 22:20
There goes any chance of a reunion: || Freaky: