April 22, 2021- I was present for a couple of curious conversations, about the colour blue, this afternoon and evening. In the first, during a discussion between an art docent and a group of second graders, one boy referred to “regular blue”. By this, he meant the shade of blue associated with a clear sky. In the second conversation, this evening, a little boy, talking with his sister and grandfather, in a local restaurant, spoke of “real blue”. He was referring to the blue in people’s eyes.
Blue has always been my favourite colour. It is the colour of my own eyes, and I have been partial to any shade of blue in my wardrobe of shirts. Perhaps this is a matter of matching face and torso. In any case, I also find blue, along with yellow, as soothing.
Society seems to be of two minds about the colour. Blue is variously associated with the Democratic Party (“Act Blue”) and American police (“Back the Blue”). The two entities need not be at odds with one another, but some seek to stir up animosity along those lines. Indeed, there was a time when both Democrats and police were associated with the most reactionary elements of American society (i.e. the Birmingham Police & Fire Action of 1963 and the Chicago “Police Riot” of 1968). Now, while the best of the police seek to upgrade their profession’s image, through reasonable reforms, the Democrats have cast reactionary politics aside, opting for an ideological range from moderate to progressive.
Blue has also been associated with melancholia (“the blues”) and optimism (“Blue Skies ahead”). Thus, as with a lot of things in life, the fifth colour in Roy G Biv’s palette can signal different things to different people. There was even a time when blue was regarded as a girl’s colour and pink was for boys.
It’s all good, as long as I can be recognized as true blue, by my family and trusted friends.