It’s all about that dress

imagesSadly, I have to report that the latest crisis in our country may still be broiling, or at least simmering. As late as last weekend television news and infotainment programs were still mentioning the latest shred of information on the controversy. Therefore, I cannot remain silent on this topic for a moment longer. Any guesses out there as to which conundrum I speak? Do the words gold and white, or black and blue mean anything to you?

The, emphasis on the long “e,” please, dress. Has there been such discussion on a dress since Janet Jackson’s famed wardrobe malfunction at the Super Bowl? This latest manufactured-debate held our limited attention for better than a week. Perhaps credit is due for that feat alone.

Needless to say, I was over it the minute, 6:01 a.m. to be exact; I pronounced it gold and white. Simple – right? Luckily, I learned of the pressing what-color-is-the dress question over breakfast on Friday, February 27. Fortuitous because had I not obtained this nugget of so-called news, I would have been woefully out of the loop once I arrived for work.

As the first morning bell rang, one of my colleagues tailed a group of students into my room and said, “The kids are all fired up about this dress thing. You should take a poll.” Of course, she knows I love polls, political or otherwise, but this dress brouhaha wasn’t a day old and I was tiring fast.

Fired up didn’t do the furor justice, apoplectic is more like it. Any desires of accomplishing anything in the ensuing 85 minutes meant addressing the dress. Cell phones were being thrust into my face, all accompanied by the same query and followed by an explanation of why my eyes saw what they did. Cynically, I noted this was their way of sounding all science-y on the English teacher. Surely they were thinking if they Googled for some one-line explanation as to why this phenomenon occurred, it would pass for a lesson. Unless that dress sported a scarlet letter, I was not going there.

Finally, they calmed down until the next bunch came in. All the while, I was hoping it was out of their systems. Not so. Here we go again. A few kids insisted I view the dress photos on their phones. Then, perhaps my eyes would see something different. Nope, still gold and white. “Here, look on Twitter,” one insisted.” Same result except I saw a tweet from a student with a gold and white comment accompanied by some blue language. “Tell (insert student’s name here) that he needs to clean up his language,” I instructed her to laughter all around. At least I made them laugh.

Enter third period – same drill. Is it 2:50 p.m. yet? Finally, a kindred spirit in the front of the class agreed with me, imagine if a day were to be set aside for a collective national conversation on an issue of real importance. We high-fived, she and I, as the rest rattled on about retinas, the images your brain wants to see, and other theories on how our brains process color.

At the day’s ending bell, I breathed a sigh of relief. Then, I checked my email. Adults, I know were also intrigued by a simple shift’s color and they were emphatic about it.

“It was absolutely gold and white.”

“No DOUBT blue and black.”


“You kids are crazy. It’s blue and black,” one accused.

“Both, it changes every time I look at it,” said the fence sitter.

And from the appeaser, “I have tried to see blue and black, but I cannot – I see only white and gold.”

Needless to say, I didn’t respond. Last I heard Lego lost no time capitalizing on the story as they built two different versions of little Lego girls wearing both versions of the dress. Final word, perhaps this is the greatest marketing ploy ever. Now there’s a lesson for you.


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