Letter from a Male Fauvist
Jimmy Chen

Dear Father,

I hope you enjoyed your annual 'non-gay' fishing trip with Joey. I would have gone myself, but am still a little flinchy from last year when you pushed me overboard.

You may have noticed that I re-painted the hallways purple. It is not a stretch to call this scheme utterly soothing. Those with plebian tastes may recoil under the fairly saturated hue, I admit, though more refined sensibilities will be pulled by the faintest inclines of fuchsia. Dad, please—no jokes about the color being 'gay,' or me being 'gay' in general. Since I disclosed my sexual orientation this summer, I've noticed you've taken a liking to saying that word.

You might also notice that our entire first floor ceiling is light purple (to evoke reflected light and/or spiritual air). The natural ochre tones of the wooden floors read as orange, which play in complexity with the purple theme. Before you dismiss all this colorist stuff as 'gay,' let me remind you that Gauguin was the recipient of more Tahitian ass than you could ever dream.
I was not hurt when you let Joey choose the colors for the hallway five years ago. He was the youngest child, and still is. The bright lime-green made me want to regurgitate my latest and penultimate meals each time I passed for half a decade, but I remained reticent out of respect for this family. If mother were still here, she would say the same.

I've tried to be a good son, but this weekend I could not contain the crushing pressure in my chest any longer. I thought of Cezanne who once said, Color is where the mind and universe meet. Well, my universe is purple, and my mind is at stake. Cezanne died on a dirt path after painting his final landscape. His branches were broken ribs puncturing the sour lungs of a breathless sky; and no Dad, he was not 'gay.'
A color consultant generally charges $500 - $700 dollars per hue, and while I minored in Interior Design, I don't want your money. I would rather these figures be allocated to Joey's college fund; either that or a lobotomy, or a heart transplant for you. Simply owning the flutter of your eyelashes as you walk away from me is compensation enough.

Your son,

Jimmy Chen's writing has appeared in Failbetter, Juked, elimae, and Lamination Colony, among others; recently a story of his was included in See You Next Tuesday (Vol. 2), published by Better Non Sequitur. He lives in San Francisco.

To link to this story directly: http://wigleaf.com/200809fauvist.htm

Photo detail on main page courtesy of Scurzuzu.

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