I bought a small rug to put in front of my kitchen sink on the weekend. I used to have one but in her final days, our dog … well, let’s just say it wasn’t salvageable. As Gizmo Guy and I were in the store trying to make the decision as to which design to choose, we had a discussion about our kitchen.
“The kitchen’s green, so we need something with green in it,” said I.
Gizmo Guy looked at me, puzzled. “The kitchen’s green? I thought it was yellow.”
“No, it’s that godawful green. I really want to paint it one day.” (I do too. I’ve been saying I’ll paint it ever since we moved in. That’s 7 years ago, folks.)
After a while, we decided upon a rug that had both green and yellow in it. (It’s old world style, vegetables in muted colors.) When we got home to put it in place, I realized we were both right.
The cabinets are green, the walls are yellow.
Whoever lived here before did a slap-happy dismal job painting the ’70s cabinets that need replacing. There are drips and missed spots on the paint job. Not to mention that sickly green color. (I like various shades of green, but this reminds me of that hospital green.) Since I took great pains to paint the cabinets in our last home with three coats of melamine – no drips, no splatters, no missed spots – these ugly green badly-painted cabinets really bother me.
Gizmo Guy however doesn’t like the yellow on the walls – he thinks it’s too bright and wants to tone it down.
In other words, we each focused on what bothered us and blanked out the other part of the room.
That discussion had me thinking about my work-in-progress and how one character can focus on one aspect of an issue, and another character might view the same issue from a totally different perspective. (Rather like witnesses at a crime scene – they rarely agree on details.) But it’s a great source to draw upon for conflict. Especially when both characters are right. And both characters are wrong.
And with that I got inspired last night and attacked my manuscript with renewed vigor. I got up this morning with similar intentions. Only to be told my eldest son needs to be driven around town this morning, and this afternoon my youngest son has an interview I have to drive him to. Rats. But as I grumble and whine, I have to remind myself how petty I’m being. Especially compared to the challenges some of my friends are facing right now as their loved ones are struggling to beat cancer.
See? It’s all about perspective, isn’t it?
Don’t forget about the chat I’m taking part in at eight PM tonight over at Romance at Heart. It’s in the AUTHOR’S GRILL Room, not the General room.