The New Black

It has been said that this season, black is the new black. I can dig it. Sometimes it's just so right.

I put on light grey pants this morning and they just didn't flow for me. They made me feel vaguely like a wuss. I switched them out for pedal-to-the-metal noir. Black wool pinstripe trousers, black tee, black wrap sweater. Black leather jacket.

However, even in such a petulant mood, one could benefit from a little spark. My boss, who has an amazing intuition for garment design and color theory, calles it the "kicker color." Or rather, she's Australian so it's "kick-ah cuhl-ah."

I apply it thus: when you're feeling noir, viva le blood-red handbag.

These are the little amusements that keep me going. I fear I am becoming an automaton: sleeping, working, knitting in front of the television. One must fight the good fight -- William Packard taught me that. Right now I'm using that advice as leverage to help whup out a few more songs. But it's slow going.

What is the emotional equivalent of a kicker color?

I have noticed one phenomenon. I was sifting through a drawer of huge plastic crochet hooks recently and started blushing. Studying piles of cable-knit swatches today, my eyes followed the pretzel, braid, and diamond patterns in their ever-increasing intricacy -- twisting and pulling and splitting apart and linking up again -- until I grew positively dizzy.

Ah, Eros. You scamp.