Teach Me Colors, Crayola Crayons


box of 64 crayonscourtesy of google.com

box of 64 crayons
courtesy of google.com

box of 8 crayons – courtesy of google.com







There are two types of students in this world. Those who attended art class with the pack of 8 Crayola crayons and those who attended with the 64-crayon set complete with its own sharpener. I am the youngest of four boys, and my parents were on a tight budget. So, guess which pack of crayons I had.

Me and my 8-pack limped into art class every year. This handicap was probably surmountable for someone who possessed some artistic skills. Not me. Any artistic skills I have go towards writing, thank you very much.

One time my teacher said, “Draw a winter scene.” I borrowed someone’s white crayon, drew the whole page white, and proudly showed the teacher my creation. When she asked, I told her it was a blizzard. She was not as proud of my creativity (okay, I was being a wise ass – hey this skill did not just occur – I have honed it since birth.) and insisted I go back and try harder. I hrrmphed and did as instructed.

Not only am I artistically challenged, I am very poor at color identification. After all, I was only taught eight colors. Now unlike you 64-pack people who probably know that sepia is in the brown family (I just looked it up on Crayola website, I know only blue, brown, yellow, orange, purple, red, black, and green. Don’t ask me about different shades, gradations, and the fancy names that go along with them.

Now, while I am clearly a bit bitter over my knowledge deficiency of colors, I have managed to live a decent life. But don’t think it is irrelevant.

I have a friend, JS, who is color blind, and can’t distinguish red from green. Someone you want to drive with, eh. Somehow, he does work it out, but getting dressed can be a challenge. He stocked up on khaki pants figuring that any shirt matches khaki. The only time he gets in trouble is when he decides he wants to wear his black pants. Then, he needs help. And even if he makes a mistake, it is understandable.

But what about me (wow – that sounds so selfish)? A while back, I told you about my desire to be stylish even if I don’t love shopping. My drive to be stylish has few requirements. However, color recognition is certainly one of them.

While I am not color blind, telling the difference between navy and black is nearly impossible for me. The other day I held took a polo shirt out of my closet and held it up to the light. I put it next to my pants. I asked my six-year-old, but he was busy watching Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. I decided the heck with it, assumed it was navy, and went on with my evening. The next day I started doubting and when I got to work, I asked a colleague. She confirmed, “No, that is definitely black.”

Crap, I screwed up again. I’d like to blame it on me being in a rush to lay my clothes out. I have actually gone to work with two different black shoes before and not noticed till I felt a bit off balance.

I blame my 8-pack of Crayola Crayons. My whole life might be more colorful if I had the pack of 64. Well at least, I could match my clothes and talk about different color shades. Oh well, I suppose I’m feeling blue.