The Difference Between Men and Women (Color-Coded)

BlindsAs any wife/girlfriend can tell you, most men have absolutely no concept of colors, except in connection with a specific sports team.

Case in point:  I was out walking the dog on a nice summer day and passed a house that had recently changed ownership.  A young woman and her husband/boyfriend were in the driveway, and each was holding a set of window blinds.  I overheard the woman emphatically [p.c. version of conversation] tell the man, These are ivory, not white. I told you I needed white!

When I started laughing, they both looked at me with daggers in their eyes, and I quickly walked away.  But what I would like to have told them is that my husband and I had the exact same conversation just a few days before that.

Color WheelI’ve come to the conclusion that men, unless they are artists or interior decorators, see only the basic colors:  white, black, blue, red, green, yellow, etc. – they do not recognize shades of those colors:  ivory, ebony, royal, cranberry, sage, honey, etc. [please, no comments about shades of gray].  And heaven forbid there be a combination of colors:  plaid, marble, mosaic, woven, tweed, etc.

A former beau once gave me a beautifully wrapped Christmas present.  When I opened it, I discovered the ugliest green/brown/orange plaid coat I had ever seen.  I tried really hard to act enthusiastic, especially when the poor guy said proudly, “It’s green – it matches your eyes.”  Apparently, I was no better an actress then than I am now – after a few minutes, he suggested that if I wanted, I could exchange it for a different color.

When I recently purchased my new bedroom furniture, my current hubby took some personal time off to accept delivery.  Arriving home after work that evening, I found him dripping with sweat and near collapse, but with a cat-ate-the-canary look on his face.  In his infinite wisdom (and apparent love for me), he had decided that since the room was empty of furniture prior to delivery, he would repaint the walls (which had last been painted 20 years ago).  Sounds like a great idea, right?

The walls were originally turquoise, and the furniture and curtains were white. When I arrived home, I found the walls were now nearly white with just a whisper of turquoise – they actually looked pretty cool, almost like a custom paint job.  But then hubby said, “I’ll apply the second coat later.”

Second coat? What color?

“White,” he said. For whatever reason, he thinks all walls in all rooms of all houses should be white.

HospitalBedI had to explain that painting that small room white and then putting white furniture in there would make it look like a hospital room, and I had been in far too many hospital rooms lately. Thank heavens, he saw my point and agreed to leave the walls with one coat of white and just a whisper of turquoise – even though he thought the walls looked “splotchy” (they looked fine to me – guess men and women differ in their concept of solid vs. splotchy).

I love it when my husband will ask me what I think of the clothes he has set out for work.  He’ll hold up a pair of pants (let’s say brown) and a shirt (let’s say a blue/purple plaid), and black shoes, and say “These go together, right?

(Yep, absolutely, honey – the women will be all over you … actually, they maybe will, since you’ll look so needy.)

Not that I’m a fashion queen, mind you.  If anyone ever saw me out in the yard with Puppy Cody at 5:00 a.m., they would find me in mismatched sweats and decrepit sneakers, with my hair (well, at least as much hair as I have) going every which way.

But to get back to the battles between the sexes.

RedFordFusionGo car shopping together – the man will be looking for power and safety, while the woman is likely to say something like, “I want that one – it’s pretty.”  (I always look for power and safety, too, but pretty tends to win out.  That’s how I wound up with that red car.)

When I bought my bedroom furniture, there was a couple looking at living room displays.  The man picked out a couch that looked quite comfy (one of those things with beer can holders in the armrests).  The wife immediately said, “But it’s the wrong color – it won’t match the room.”  They were apparently purchasing items for the basement rec room (I guess now they’re called media rooms or something) – who really cares if the furniture matches in a room only the family is likely to see?  In this case, the man acquiesced – I never did learn what they ultimately chose, and I can only hope it was both comfy and color appropriate.


I could go on forever about the male/female dichotomy.  Let me just end with this:

Men – Never buy your spouse/girlfriend a piece of clothing.  Even if you miraculously get the color right, chances are the size will be wrong.  Or even if the size is right, you will insult her because you bought a “medium” that fits instead of the “small” that makes her feel better about herself – or, if you bought the small you thought would make her feel better, she’ll complain that you wasted your money and her time because she’ll have to take the darn thing back.  There’s no winning this one, guys – stick with jewelry, you can never go wrong with that!


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Images by: Brittney Bush Bollay, and Victor Hertz, and Michael Cory, and Chelsea Flowers, respectively

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42 Responses to The Difference Between Men and Women (Color-Coded)

  1. Paul says:

    No argument here.


  2. Jim Wheeler says:

    Guilty as charged. However, I can’t approve of your suggestion to stick to jewelry for gifts. She has more than she can wear (although she comes pretty close). One diamond and emerald ring went down a toilet some years ago – guess the size was a little large. (See? Same problem as with the clothes.) In recent years she’s been opting for travel vacations, something that made us both happy. But now that air travel has approached the limits of human endurance (delays, fees, air turbulence, deep vein thrombosis, cracked knees, ebola), even she is backing off that. C’mon, CM. Us guys are going to need something better than jewelry. (I saw Christmas trees in a store the other day. Yipes.)


    • Good point about rings – I’ve had to have some resized, too. Even necklaces can be sized wrong for a particular person.

      Hmmm, let me think – personally, I’ve always wanted a pony, but can’t have one in my suburban subdivision so at one point we just got a really large dog. Couldn’t ride him, but he was a wonderful size for hugging. And since he was a black German Shepherd, no one ventured onto my property unannounced.

      Not that the foregoing story solves your dilemma. Afraid you’re on your own for Christmas gifts. I’m sure she’ll be thrilled with whatever you give her (or at least appear to be).


  3. Doobster418 says:

    Primary colors. Plus black and white. That’s all anyone really needs.


  4. Reblogged this on Lucky & Beautiful and commented:
    I had to reblog this one. She speaks the truth!


  5. Archon's Den says:

    I have no comment, except, , “Whatever you’d like.” or, “Yes dear!” 😉 😕


  6. Pingback: The Fellowship Of The Blog – Episode Four | Archon's Den

  7. Ha ha, consensus proves the post.
    My husband is so “black and white” about everything it drives me nuts lol.


  8. idiotwriter says:

    I am SOooo sick of neutrals! 😉 Cool post ~


  9. idiotwriter says:

    Reblogged this on Idiot Writing and commented:
    A really fun read 😀


  10. John Hanson says:



  11. Neutrals have their place, but so do colors.
    Thanks for the re-blog!


  12. busy lady says:

    The post and the comments made me laugh! Actually, my husband did pretty good with colors, however, we moved into a new condominium with all white walls. He finally agreed to painting them! All white walls are not good.


    • I’m happy that I made you chuckle.

      I was especially upset at my husband because that bedroom was the only room in the house that didn’t have white walls. It was a concession I made to my daughter when she had that room because it was smaller than her sisters’ room (which did have white walls).

      Liked by 1 person

  13. lorieb says:

    too funny, but very true! My husband does not mind colors, but has no sense of what goes with what and more importantly, what does NOT go with what…


  14. Reblogged this on Cordelia's Mom, Still and commented:

    After our week of mourning, it’s time for something light-hearted. Since I couldn’t come up with anything new (damn absent muse), please enjoy a re-blog of this post about the ongoing battle of men versus women.


  15. They also do not see dirt. Cobwebs are invisible. Floors only need cleaning when we say so. We see dirt, paw prints, smudges. They see a nice clean floor. I think it’s genetic.


  16. socialbridge says:

    Oh how I love Paul’s comments! Miss him terribly today.

    To your post, it made me laugh so much. I hasten to add,though, that the jewelry bit has been got ‘wrong’ in this house (on more than one occasion) so stay away from that too, I say!


    • You have a point there, Jean. Too many men can’t tell the difference between zircons and diamonds.


      • socialbridge says:

        I have to admit that I’m at
        the extreme end of the men scale on everything you’ve written. Couldn’t give a damn about the house or car – so long as they do the basics and amn’t into jewels! ( Hubby works in interiors and has huge interest; I’m allergic both physically and mentally to stuff like paint and new carpets and furniture.)

        Liked by 1 person

  17. Elyse says:

    I’m missing Paul, too. 😔

    But I’m pretty sure my husband is somewhat abnormal. He chooses g eat clothes for me (but asks me the sizes to save himself. His jewelry choices are usually quite good — except for the ring he gave me for out 10th anniversary, right after he’d gotten a promotion. It was huge and horrible.


    • My husband seldom gives jewelry. But a few years ago, he honored my wishes and chose a beautiful band encrusted with rubies (his birthstone) and diamonds (my birthstone), to replace the wedding band I had to have cut off my ever fattening finger. It was the best gift ever!


  18. troubledtide says:

    I once had a lover who would bring my “gifts” of colorless, bland granny sweaters and… wait for it…. wait for it…. SOCKS. Plaid socks that might have worked for a 12 year old in 1980. Polka dotted socks. Socks with puppies on them. It was cringe worthy. And oh… once he brought me a tourist-oriented coffee mug… for the city I live in.

    From now on if a guy asks me what I want for my birthday or christmas, I just say CASH.


    • Cash is always the right color. I have a friend who loves weird socks – too bad you didn’t know her, you could have given her all of yours! As for the coffee mug – I actually collect coffee mugs, and since I don’t travel much, my family brings them to me when they travel. But wouldn’t you know, I don’t have a single coffee mug from my own area, which includes one of the 7 Wonders of the World: Niagara Falls!

      Liked by 1 person

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