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More than one person has asked me, "Are you really wearing a white jacket?" It is hard not to channel my inner 13 year old who always had a sarcastic remark when my mom asked if I was wearing that to school or my inner 51 year old who always has a sarcastic remark when my children ask if I am really wearing those pants. 

Instead I say, "Yes, I am wearing a white jacket and I'm really careful." That's partially a lie. My Aunt Bernice and I used to have competitions at the Florentine to see who got spaghetti on her shirt first. And I'm not actually very careful about drooling, but that is the great gift of white clothing. 

We were camping in Utah and it was dark and cold and I was making curry. There is nothing better in this world when you are dark and cold than a nice, rich curry (it was especially rich because I didn't realize I had paste instead of sauce until I had dumped the entire jar into the dish - there is a great difference between one tablespoon and an entire jar). Somehow I splattered it all over my white jacket; orange curry dots erupted like puke on snow. It did not seem salvageable.

When we got to civilazation, I washed it and the spots went from bright orange to burnt orange. Then I had a brilliant idea from all those years of cloth diapers. I hung it in the sunshine and the sun did its magic. The coat was as white as unpuked on snow until I drool again.

In the VeggieTales movie Jonah, mercy is defined as giving someone a second chance. I like that. I've always leaned towards dark clothes to hide my spills, but I think I'm going to all white so I can acknowledge my messes, put them into the sunshine, and get a second chance. A song lyric from Gregory Alan Isakov that often gets stuck in my head is, "If it weren't for second chances, we'd all be alone." 

Wearing white seems dangerous for someone who is not always tidy, but so does mercy.

 


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