My kitchen has white metal cabinets. They’re vintage postwar Genevas, original to the house, sleek and gleaming with shiny chrome pulls, perfect for my black-and-white diner-style kitchen. Modern, unusual, and ultra stylish; what’s not to love?

Not long after we moved in, a new friend came over and said, walking into the kitchen, “Well, it’s a nice size, and you can always replace the cabinets.” I wasn’t offended, but I did wonder, just for an instant, whether we could still be friends. I mean, if she didn’t love my cabinets, we must be fundamentally incompatible, right?

That’s plain silly, of course, and we’re still good friends even though the cabinets have stayed. But I still wonder: what does a shared taste in décor — or eye for furniture or ear for music — do for a relationship? Here’s what I think: it’s easier to talk with somebody who instinctively shares your taste, but that easiness isn’t always a sign of the deeper harmony that keeps friends together.

So what do you think — of my cabinets and my question?