Orange or Other

A to Z Challenge

   I’m still a letter behind on the challenge and tomorrow will probably put me back another letter but let’s focus on the letter “O” for now.

   I am one of those annoying people that don’t have a favorite color, a favorite band, a favorite season…nothing.  I am very middle of the road in just about every aspect.  Even my looks are middle of the road.  I’m plain, I don’t dress myself up but don’t go out of my way to dress down, either.  I’m ordinary but also unique because I am just me and I accept that (mostly).

   So when you ask me “What’s your favorite [insert random category]?”  I will counter with the ever frustrating:

I don’t have a favorite [insert]! I have a preference in [insert] of all [insert]!

because I’m secretly that awesomely complex.

   My default favorite color has always been blue.  As kids, Stilla got everything pink or purple, I got everything blue or green. This wouldn’t have been a problem if baby blue and lime green were never discovered.  My favorite shade of blue is indigo.  It’s an impressive color! How can something be so dark and deep and yet so radiant and enlightening at once?  I look at it and feel happy inside.  indigo-kraft-paper-softseating-03-b

   One color I never appreciated much is orange.  It’s obnoxious. It’s bright in both the obvious sense as well as the cheery. It blends easily, it’s very…uncomplicated.  It also turns muddy quickly if not careful and that is something I don’t like.  I use orange a lot when I paint or draw and I never gave it much thought in my past.  I always secretly liked the way my acrylic orange smelled.  It’s like a mix of candy and popsicles (no, I never ate it). It’s a thin color so I have to use more than I like– another reason to dislike orange, it costs me money in the long run. download (1)

   And then I met Kasper.

   My husband is a pretty boring guy.  He’s only now starting to like music because, according to him, he got so used to being around music while helping me recover from stroke that he now notices the quiet.  Can you imagine growing up with very little music in your life? He listened to it before, of course, went to concerts and such but if there was no music on while doing something, he wouldn’t notice.

   When I met Kasper I found out his favorite color is orange.  It’s like his only favorite thing…he’s beyond nonchalant about things that don’t matter but when it comes to color, for some reason, orange is where it’s at for him.  At first, I was like, no…  But Kasper is a pretty awesome guy so I got to know him a little bit instead of kicking him to the curb due to his affinity for orange.  He eventually explains to me that he likes orange because it is the least noticed color on the chart.  He says no one likes it, it’s always one of the last color selections left on the shelf.

   His love started out of empathy, I think.  As time went on, I started to notice a connection Kasper has with orange.  He’s right.  It is the least noticed color even though it is almost everywhere…kind of like him.  Just like orange is used to warn of a safety hazard, he is always there to assist when danger is near.  Orange makes dull colors bright and adds gloss to what is already bright despite its neglect just as he struggles to make others satisfied and content despite his being overlooked.

   I realize now that orange is just as complex as blue except it is almost ostracized for being so bright.  I find it strange how much I took a color for granted.   Imagine for a moment, a world without orange.  There would be no pop! left in this world.  Sunsets wouldn’t be the same, that’s for sure.  Or autumn, gardens, fire, or any of the various themes we or nature adds it to for that little bit of eye awakening to remind us to be alert and aware because things you’re too busy to notice are going on around you and you need to take a moment.

   So maybe we use orange as a warning for safety and in some cases, identity, in our manmade world but I like to think nature uses it as a caution to remember that life is beautiful and even in the shadows we cast there is a speck of color waiting to be noticed.

A Rose For Kasper


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