The Blue Mind

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Recently I was made aware of a human-proposed phenomenon called “The Blue Mind.”  It’s the name of a book by Wallace J. Nichols which I haven’t read yet, but it sounds intriguing.  The lengthy subtitle of the book is “The Surprising Science That Shows How Being Near, In, On, or Under Water Can Make You Happier, Healthier, More Connected, and Better at What You Do.”  Whew, that’s a mouthful!

The Amazon blurb says, “Why are we drawn to the ocean each summer? Why does being near water set our minds and bodies at ease? In BLUE MIND, Wallace J. Nichols revolutionizes how we think about these questions, revealing the remarkable truth about the benefits of being in, on, under, or simply near water. Combining cutting-edge neuroscience with compelling personal stories from top athletes, leading scientists, military veterans, and gifted artists, he shows how proximity to water can improve performance, increase calm, diminish anxiety, and increase professional success.”

I’m a skeptical of so many grand claims and would boil it down to something much simpler:  We as humans tend to love being around, next to, looking at, and in water.  It’s often calming and just plain makes us feel better.  Think about it — we take vacations by the seaside, paint our bedrooms blue, add water features to our properties if we aren’t lucky enough to live on a river or lake or pond, and sometimes listen to recordings of ocean waves and babbling brooks to relax and fall asleep.  No one says, “Well, I think this year we’ll spend our week’s vacation next to the train tracks.”

We like looking at water and the sky, at least I do.  While I live in land-locked state now, I have fond childhood memories of Sunday afternoons spent on Carolina beaches, and currently go to lakes and rivers whenever I can — to walk, to sit, just to gaze.  I’ve also always loved lying on my back outdoors and staring at blue sky, finding shapes in the clouds or merely daydreaming.  It never gets old.

We’re currently fixing up an old house (c. 1916) we bought a few months ago, and the wide front porch was in desperate need of some love.  All the elements — walls, trim, floor, posts, ceiling — had been sloppily painted white at some point and were dirty and covered in cobwebs and various stages of insect life.  Once it was all cleaned up and we started painting, the first thing Mr. Silver Nail did was to paint the porch ceiling a lovely shade of sky blue that I chose.  I’ve always wanted a porch with a light blue ceiling!  Where I grew up, old-fashioned porches often had that and it was called “Haint Blue,” the reasoning being that it keeps the ghosts away.  I’m cool with that.  And if it helps keep bugs away that’s great too.

So spend more time near the colors and things you love, whether it’s blue or pink or water or mountains or whatever.  Find your bliss.

And to segue into a blue polish, here’s one from Zoya with an ocean vibe called Marina.  It’s a dusty or smoky blue with silver and blue shimmer, reminiscent of perhaps a storm over the water.  Marina was part of the Fall 2011 collection of shimmers called Mirrors and also contained Yara, Jem, Neeka, Tao, and Nimue, all of which are still available.

The formula of Marina was somewhat sheer so I was pleasantly surprised that two coats covered well.  Under indirect bright outdoor light with no top coat:

Marina

What a lovely color for fall or winter.  It’s more gray than Zoya’s blue Skylar which I swatched years ago.

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