The Red Dress

Don Jackson, February 14 2013
Former host of one of Canada's most popular radio shows spanning three decades.
Author, broadcaster, storyteller.

My lady’s presence makes the roses red,
Because to see her lips they blush with shame.
Henry Constable

Have you seen the cover of Taylor Swift’s recent album? The album is simply called ‘Red’ and features two very red lips. She is under a dark hat pulled down over her eyes that masks most of her other features. Obviously, her full painted lips are the focus they wanted to highlight. I think it’s safe to say that in this photograph they would also make a rose blush. 

I remember a writing from some time back called ‘The Colours Of Love’. I’m not sure the writer, but the message was clear about which colour holds the most sway over all the others. This is what the colour ‘Red’ said: 

I am the ruler of all of you..
I am blood–life’s blood!
I am the color of danger and of bravery. I am willing to fight for a cause.
I bring fire into the blood.
Without me, the earth would be as empty as the moon..
I am the color of passion and of love, the red rose, the poinsettia and the poppy.

All true, and at no time is the color red front and centre than it is around Valentine’s Day.

Valentine cards and envelopes are mostly a deep shade of red. The red rose is the most prized flower on that day. A woman may choose to wear a luxurious red dress for dining and dancing on that night. Red is one of the most popular colours for expensive sports cars like a Ferrari. Fifteen (15) percent of new car buyers some years back chose red. It was the most favourite colour for trucks at the time. The colour is usually not ignored by police. They will look to see how the car is being driven, assuming the driver might be somewhat of a show-off. I remember it once being said that red cars were somewhat more accident prone. And yet the meaning of red on stop signs and stop lights is very clear. 

A sunburn turns our skin different shades of red depending on the severity of the burn.

Colors have always been important to us. People are even superstitious about colours.

Red is most often used  for the descriptions of the fires of the underworld and the devil himself. We like our celebrities to walk the red carpet. Some of this country’s best -tasting potatoes grow in the red soil of Prince Edward Island.

Those who subscribe to Chi will tell you that in order to attract love, one wall in the southwest corner of the house should be painted red. It could also be painted yellow or white, according to the Australian women’s magazine ‘Good Medicine’

If you blush easily and want to do something about it, then consider Endoscopic Transthoracic Sympathicotomy. The surgeons will destroy the nerves that cause your face to redden and betray your inner feelings. I don’t personally know of anyone who has gone that extreme route just to curtail a blush.

And her lips reminded people of deep red roses waiting in the cool of the summer evening.
Carl Sandburg

It’s no surprise that red is the colour most associated with Valentine’s Day. It speaks of love and passion in a bold way.

I love your lips when they’re wet with wine
And red with a wicked desire.
Ella Wheeler Wilcox

In the midst of winter white, there is one day when the world puts on its red dress.

Happy Valentine’s Day.

Don Jackson, February 14 2013 

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