“Attention passengers, would the person who lost the purple reading glasses in the purple sequinned case please identify him or herself to the flight attendant.
“They’re mine” announced my strapping, 6 foot tall husband, to the amusement and snickers of the travelers around us.
Even my 9 year old son, who recently gave me his purple luminescent silly putty citing “societal pressures” as the reason he could no longer play with it in public, knows that men don’t wear purple. “It’s almost like pink, you know,” was his logical explanation.
But really, why? Why can’t men wear purple in the US? There’s no reason, it’s cultural. Just like you can’t make the OK sign with your thumb and forefinger in Brazil, or you wouldn’t wear white to a wedding in China (it’s the color of mourning.)
Okay, with purple, it’s not that men can’t wear it…it’s just that it has to be a conscientious decision. And, well, sequins, let’s just say that my husband was confident enough to usurp my glasses out of need.
But it does raise the question about “why” in cultural traditions–why no purple? Why white? What does red mean…it does vary from culture to culture, and often it’s just practice.
What habits to you follow from your culture? Do you know why?
* The glasses themselves were provided by computereyed (owned by a distant relative) and are designed for people my husband’s age (I’m far younger). Worn like reading glasses, they actually have a hidden bi-focal, that allows for seeing a computer screen (mid-distance) and up-close reading. Or, for travel, perfect for seeing the movie screen on the seat in front of you, and then reading the ingredients on the packaging for your meal.