putting the pain in paint

For once, I am aggravated and it has nothing to do with Joe.

I’ve waited seven long months to paint, and have been carrying swatches around with me for about that long. I’m the opposite of color-phobic, but my choices do tend to be, well, exuberant. Growing up, my bedroom was first turquoise (not my fault) and then pink (totally my fault). It may even be genetic: My mother twice painted her dining room what ended up being the bright, artificial neon green of a Baskin Robbins mint cone.

So you can understand my resolve to use paint samples. I even staked out scrap pieces of drywall and primed them, so we can paint them, prop them up and examine the colors in all kinds of light, just like shelter magazines tell you to.

The problem is getting the samples. I figured the little ounce jars would be two or three bucks, tops, but when I investigated, I discovered Behr samples were $7 each, and could only be ordered online, which means the added cost of shipping. When you’re as indecisive as I am, that adds up.

Fine, I thought, there’s always Benjamin Moore. They sell their (slightly cheaper) samples right in the paint store—I could pick them up on my lunch hour. But after weeks of painstakingly narrowing the selection to four colors, I’m told that Benjamin Moore doesn’t offer samples of all its paints, just certain ones. Naturally, none of the colors I wanted. I’d have to buy a quart.

Okay, back to Behr. Despite the cardiac-arrest inducing cost, Joe had insisted on the green he picked out for the bedroom, so I had already placed an order and swallowed the $9 shipping cost. I quickly called the customer service line to see if I could add more paints to my order so I wouldn’t get double-whammied with freight charges. I got only minimal satisfaction: They had already shipped my order, but promised to add one paint sample free to my next order. Still hardly worth it, plus I’d have to wait for that order to ship, plus I have to try to find similar shades to the BM paints I’d picked out. Color me annoyed.

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