Ban the beige

Billy Connolly has a phobia about beige and so do I! What is it with beige? And why do people over 55 seem to feel the need to beige down into total insignificance?

I recently went out for lunch with my husband. The dining room was filled with lots of middle aged and elderly people and most of them were dressed in beige: beige trousers, beige socks, beige shoes, beige cardigans, beige skirts, beige handbags, beige hair.

And then the food arrived – more beige! Every bit of food on the plate could have been interchanged with any other bit and you would never know! Nothing had any flavour at all. I have never, in all my life, eaten such bland and tasteless food.

Did I need to be protected from flavoursome food? Apparently so. Beige, beige, beige!

Now, I am a middle-aged woman myself but beige is not a part of my life and never will be. I am a great believer in growing old disgracefully and being un-beige! It seems to me that people of a certain age, in this youth oriented society, feel so apologetic and unacceptable for being past the flush of youth that they dress in beige to become invisible. They not only dress in beige but they behave beigely as well.

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Out of curiosity, a year or so ago, I went to see some display units at a retirement village. Whilst appearing quite pleasant on the outside, inside were beige walls, beige tiles, beige carpets, beige kitchen cupboards, beige curtains, beige furniture and beige accessories. Not a splash of colour anywhere! It was a mass of beigeness, inoffensiveness and blandness. I couldn’t get out of there quickly enough!

I urge you to take back your power and be noticed, be counted and be un-beige! We are alive, we have knowledge, experience, humour and stories to tell. We have lived lives that generally were not beige.

If you’re a Baby Boomer like me, then you probably lived an extremely un-beige youth. We were at the forefront of radical changes in society, innovation, new music and exciting times. We were anything but beige!

Now, in our 50s and 60s, we need to remember who we really are. Checking out of life and becoming a vague, beige shadow is not empowering yourself and not being the very best you can be. Most of us still have twenty or more years to live and I’m all for those years being as exciting and vibrantly un-beige as possible.

In today’s world of floods, tsunamis, earthquakes, droughts and nuclear meltdowns, it makes sense to embrace your life, live every day to it’s fullest and enjoy yourself, regardless of your age. Make every moment count and make every moment not beige!

Put colour back into your life, bin the beige – be a rainbow!