Black & White

Recently I was getting ready to head to the U.K. for a five-day seminar.

Before leaving, I showed the webpage announcing the program to a Chinese student at my residence.

As he scrolled the webpage, a concerned expression spread across his face.

“Why are these photos black and white?” he asked nervously, perusing the headshots and bios of faculty and fellows.

“Just for branding and aesthetic,” I shrugged. “Why?”

“In China, black and white photos indicate the person has died,” he explained to me.

Ah, I realized.

No wonder he had looked so startled upon seeing my black and white headshot on his laptop as I sat across from him.