C is for color



Joséphine kneels before Napoléon during his co...

Unsuitable office attire –>

 C is for color in clothing. When I was an executive with my old company, I looked in my closet one day and everything I owned seemed to be a shade of grey.  I had been hired into management in an age when women were just beginning to crack the management ranks for the second time.  The first time they cracked the management ranks was in the nineteenth century.

As I was unaware of that exciting period in women’s history, I had no guide.  Fortunately, several authors had published books designed to help women like me. You know the kind of book: Dress for Success and its ilk. In my life before the corporation, I had always worn dresses, but I left them behind and began to wear suits. The early women’s suits were all shades of grey and black. The fashion industry was so far behind the times in those days, they simply took the same fabric used in men’s dull suits and dressed women to assume a position in the “long grey line.”

I don’t think they thought women would be around for long. Perhaps they were right.  In recent years, women have lost more jobs than men as the recession hit the ranks of FIRE employees where women are heavily concentrated. (FIRE=Finance, Insurance, Real Estate in the GDP)


C is for color in the garden. I seem to have been a bit pale in my color selections of late. I have many perennials with white blossoms in my various beds, AKA, but my annuals in pots are overwhelmingly pink or will be.  

The white rose to the left (photo from my garden)may not be very impressive but I love her dearly.  She is the Blanc Double de Courbet and she was beloved of Josephine who planted her in the famous garden of Malmaison.  

Malmaison was so famous that during the Napoleonic wars the British let any rose destined for Josephine’s garden pass through the naval blockade they set up around France.  The Blanc Double was one of those roses. Well, it makes a good story, and I can see how the French would have loved her and the British too. It is true, however, that the British let flowers destined for Malmaison pass through the blockade. 

Blanc Double is a Rugosa or rugged rose, a hedge rose and one of the oldest China rosas. Loaded with thorns, I think she must be the rose that pricked Rose White’s thumb (or was that Rose Red?). She is extremely fragrant. Here is what Fine Gardening says about her:

 The white of this rose has a purity of color that is without equal. It produces semi-double, very fragrant flowers from spring to fall, which are sometimes followed by orange hips. It grows to 6 feet high and wide.  
Rugosa roses have thorny branches and attractive, distinctively wrinkled leaves. (The species takes its name from the Latin word rugosus, meaning “full of wrinkles”). They grow well in mixed borders, hedges, and as specimens, and are tolerant of harsh conditions, including salt spray, wind, and poor soil. 

The downside of the Blanc Double according to FG is that some insects like her very much. I haven’t noticed much insect damage, but I suspect this is because I always have Wrens and Chickadees nesting nearby, and they like insects.

Is the Double Blanc named for Mt. Blanc in France?

I visited there and found it very cold and white.

C is for cuff as in Rotator Cuff.  David saw his orthopedic surgeon yesterday. Actually, he saw my guy.  Seems the practice we use is composed of specialists. David’s guy has replaced a hip and knee-joint and given him many shots over the past few years.  My guy works on shoulders and knees and does arthroscopic work. I know he is ‘my guy’ because when I saw the fellow who does backs, he sent copies of the records from my back exam to both my primary physician and my orthopedic surgeon.   

3 Mont Blanc - DSC_9242

David saw Dr. McConnell yesterday and the doc gave him a prescription for physical therapy. He says before they do surgery they will try this approach.  This was David’s third visit to see a member of the practice in three weeks and will be his 4th set of PT sessions. So far, he’s been to PT for shoulder, hip and knee.  When he walks into reception, the gal at the desk says, “Why are you here?” She goes through the whole litany before she comes to the correct body part. 

All this shows that:

1/ if one part of your body goes, they all start to go;

2/ you have to be a medical genius to keep up with your own body;

3/ Why Medicare is going broke;

4/ all of the above. 

As I filled in the PT schedule on our calendar, I told David I needn’t have wondered what I would do after I finished my degree in two weeks. I can see it now…my calender stretches out into the future filled with appointments for both of us for eyes, ears, joints, and internal organs.  Oh yes, I might manage to arrange a visit to a local rose garden too.

Mt. Blanc massif

Mt. Blanc massif (Photo credit: h_saarikoski)


 Note: for the hats, simply click on Amazon and type in Hats-women.  Then search until you find what you have in mind.  The hats I chose are under the cloche selection. That’s ‘bell’ in French. 



10 thoughts on “C is for color

  1. Sorry to hear the Ruguso is a favorite of bugs. I know it is disease resistant and I am cursed with black spot. I was hoping Ruguso would solve that problem. Back to the drawing board.
    I am a big believer in PT and hope it helps David.


    • Patti, My Rugosa rose is NOT bothered by insects. FG article is misleading perhaps. Besides, the trick is to invite the birds which you do. The down side of the Rugosa for me is that I must wear very thick gloves to handle her. She is prickly.


  2. I won’t grow roses here, because I am afraid of the poison used on the plant to kill pests. A friend’s son got leukemia from their neighbor’s poison spray on roses.

    Sad that we all have so many medical appointments when we reach a certain age.


  3. Cloche hats are my favourite! If only I could wear one.

    Reading your post, I had several answers for this comment and then I got to the cloche hats bit and the rest went out of my mind.

    I’m much more frivolous than I thought I was 🙂


  4. Surely the rose is called ‘blanc’, because that’s what it is, namely white.

    When I first went to work I didn’t need to wear suits, ordinary dresses and skirts were allowed. I even worked dressed in very colourful outfits in the seventies.

    I now what you mean about a diary full of medical appointments; we have tons between us. Very boring and time consuming. They mess up so many days when I would rather do something else.


  5. If I could grow roses I would want this one. And your photo captured the “purity” of the white marvelously. Too bad the camera couldn’t capture the scent. The “inappropriate ” office attire is a lot more interesting than what some youngsters consider appropriate these days.

    Hope the PT helps. And I just scheduled another’s doctor’s appointment, working around my therapy and his scarce availability. My sympathies to you as keeper of the schedule and to you, David, me and others who are either trying to refurbish our parts or are having to order new parts.


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