musty-colored

Swamp-landia

Senior Member
NYC
Mandarin; Shanghainese
A line from Chapter 12 of Karen Russell's Swamplandia!

"The driver had an acned face and musty-colored bangs and laughed without teeth."

Are musty-colored bangs greenish bangs?
 
  • sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English
    I would take it as another piece of the (hopefully) intentionally weird writing that you have frequently cited from this author.

    So, go into an old attic full of articles that haven't been disturbed for at least 50 years, take a deep breath, then describe the color you "see."

    I hope you're reading this book for enjoyment rather than becoming familiar with real English. :D

    Concise Oxford English Dictionary © 2008 Oxford University Press:
    musty/ˈmʌsti/
    adjective (mustier, mustiest)
    • 1 having a stale or mouldy smell or taste.
    • 2 unoriginal or outdated.
     

    pwmeek

    Senior Member
    English - American
    Yes. More synesthesia* from Karen Russell. I think it makes her writing more vivid. But, as sdgraham says, don't take examples from this book as models of English for your own writing or speaking.

    * Experiencing things normally felt with one sense as though they were felt by one or more other senses. People who have this medical condition actually do experience sounds as colors, colors as smells, and similar cross-sensory combinations.
     

    Swamp-landia

    Senior Member
    NYC
    Mandarin; Shanghainese
    Thank you for your advice sd and pw!

    I thought synaesthesia is only a type of literaral rhetoric. I didn't know it is a medical condition. :D
     
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