Friday, December 01, 2006

Red

I know it’s the time of year when red and green abound – green trees with red bows, holly green wreaths with crimson decorations. ‘Tis the season, after all – Santa red, Radio Flyer red, Poinsettia red. I’m sure my house will soon have its share of holiday colors.

Red isn’t just one of the colors of the season, though. For me, red has long been the color of freedom and self-expression.

While my first car wasn’t red (it was a lovely medium blue 1971 Pinto with a black leather roof), most of the other cars I’ve owned in my life have been red – first a Renault, then a Honda, and, today, a BMW (yes, it IS my mid-life crisis car, in case you were wondering). Not a subtle burgundy or maroon, but RED!

Plenty of things in my life have subdued, neutral or downright drab hues. I lean toward white or cream colored walls in my house. And I have more pairs of black shoes than I care to count. But at a time in my life when my work “uniform” was a navy or black blazer over a white shirt – nice, safe colors when a young professional woman is hoping to be taken seriously – I decided I needed a blast of color, but where?

As I moved up the career ladder, the colors in my day didn’t change much. There were taupe suits with black heels or navy blue dresses. No traipsing into “serious” meetings in anything festive. So when it came to my wheels, I figured I was going to go as wild as the standard factory-issue palette would allow. Enter, the red car!

Soon, that red car started to be more than just a bright accessory – it became my freedom. A little red CRX with a sun roof has a way of not only cheering you up after a day spent in office building prison, but also breathes some independence back into life. Who knows where that baby can take you?

Sure, any car will get you down the highway, but believe me, there is something about hopping into a scarlet, two-door roadster, cranking up the stereo and shifting into fifth to breathe a little independence back into a life full of responsibility.

Don’t get me wrong – I embrace and am proud of the things I’ve accomplished in my life, both professionally and with my family. But there’s nothing like a little, shiny red car to remind me that I can still be a bit wild and have a taste of emotional freedom when I slide behind the wheel and let the wind blow through my hair, even when that car includes a booster seat, Cheerio crumbs and sticky juice boxes!

PunditMom is a freelance writer, recovering attorney and mom to a 6 ¾ year old daughter (yes, the “3/4” is VERY important!) in the Washington, D.C. suburbs of Maryland.

Hang out with her and CheeseParty’s Amy over at her blog for a while!

Amy, thanks for the chance to blog in your neighborhood today!

Check in here for all the other Blog Exchange participants and more info!

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22 comments:

Mombat said...

Oh, Punditmom, as a lawyer myself, this resonated well with me! Sometimes I just want to spring out of my office and do a little jig for color.

I'll buy a car instead. Genius.

Lawyer Mama said...

Oh yes! PM you and I must have been sisters in a past life. I still miss my red Audi and the way it made me feel.

Kate said...

Great illustration of the feeling of freedom! Nothing like shifting gears in a fast red car. I have always loved driving

I have a red car, too, but unfortunately mine is not as nice as your beemer. I'm still working on that!

Amy Jo said...

As serial renters, we've always had plain white walls. We were so excited when our new place was painted taupe. So the first thing we're doing once we finally buy a house is painting one room a bold, deep red.

Thanks for visiting today ladies!

ECR said...

I painted my daughter's room barn red. Several people have commented that design and color analysis show that red walls elicit feelings of anger in people. I don't know about that. My daughter is one of the happiest babies I know. On the other hand, she is prone to crying herself to sleep in her crib. . .hmmmmmm.

Her Bad Mother said...

Ooh. Red sportscar. Freedom with a motor...

Amy Jo said...

ecr - I used to work at McDonald's and they said that red and yellow tend to make people anxious! We'll just have to be careful to not over do it.

There really is something freeing about driving, isn't there? I only learned to drive a stick shift about 2 years ago, and it was amazing. When ever I go out and get away from being 'mom' for awhile, I always take my husband's car, which is a manual with a turbo. It's not red, though...

PunditMom said...

I love being able to drive a stick shoft, tho' I didn't learn until I was in my 20s. Now, in my 40s, the practical side of me says I should give it up, especially with all the 'in town' driving I do. But I Can't. Quite. Let. Go!

TB said...

I've never owned a red car, but every time I've rented one, there has been an unexplicable feeling that comes over me when I drive it.

super des said...

I loved my little green mini cooper, even though t wasn't red. What a fun blog exchange and a fun read!

Amy Jo said...

des - was it an old one or a new one? We almost bought one a few years ago, but our pratical side won over. Boo to being grown ups.

jen said...

ahh..i too, had a red CRX. and loved it.

Heather said...

I drive a red PT Cruiser these days. Not quite giving in to the Mommy mode yet.

Sadly, the 2 sports cars that I owned as a younger woman were not red. A black Mazda RX7 and a blue Toyota MR2.

A. Elliot said...

I loved my red stick shift Toyota Tercel even though it didn't have power steering or anti-lock brakes.

Kristen said...

God I SOOOOO wanted a red crx.

PunditMom said...

One of the best parts of the red CRX was that I bought it used -- two years old and it only had 8,000 miles on it! Driven by the proverbial little old lady to church on Sundays, so it was like getting a new car, but on sale!

super des said...

My mini was a new one. It was custom made for me. I drove it for a few years, and then across country. I was very sad when I had to sell it (because I couldn't afford a car I never used in NYC) but the girl who got it loved it, so I know my little Scootey is ok.

Mayberry said...

I love that moms are entitled to midlife crisis cars too. Rock on.

Amy Jo said...

I think black is a cool color for a sports car, too, though. I've always loved black cars!

punditmom - you appeal to my true sense of value. I love getting something on a bargain, especially if it's something a teeny bit extravagant. I once found a $300 purse in a thrift store for $50, and I was giddy for a whole week!

Damselfly said...

I agree, red cars are great. Once you go red, it's hard to have anything but again.

Amy Jo said...

Off topic, but Yay! PunditMom! This was the first post on my blog to get 20 comments! Thank you so much for the wonderful inspiration!

PunditMom said...

Yours too over at mine, Amy! Holding at 21! Thanks to you, as well! ;)