"...In the end, people either have excuses or experiences; reasons or results; buts or
brilliance. They either have what they wanted or they have a detailed list of all the rational reasons why not."

~ Anonymous
(taken from Matt Erbele's, It Takes Time to Get Good)

Sunday, March 16, 2008

What is the deal with the pink?

I am sitting on my couch in my pink fleece, wearing pink 'super soft' socks, with my pink water bottle next to me. I run in a pink hat and carry a pink RBR bag to races. Pink has become my power color. That makes some people (women, mostly) unhappy.

Lately, (read: after a bitch at the tri training made a comment about my pink shirt and hat. Yeah, I know, bad ass, you and your mini van are too cool to wear pink. Sorry short rant. It is over. I'm fine.) I have been thinking, "what is the deal with the pink?"

As a young child, 7 or so, I LOVED pink. I thought it was the prettiest color. I wasn't really into dolls or Barbie, much, but I had a rock tumbler (remember those?!) and any rock that came out even remotely pink was instantly my favorite. I liked pink clothes, pink things, and my Mom decorated my room in blue.

As a pre-teen and teenager, I HATED pink. I despised its "girlie" connotations. I would REFUSE to don anything that could even be considered a related color to pink. Reds, purples, burgundies, they were all to be avoided at all cost. I loved blue and black, I listened to dark music, heavily lined my eyes in black, and my Mom decorated my room in pink. (Sensing a pattern, here?)

My hatred of pink carried into my adulthood. Why? Pink was "girlie", weak, soft, and certainly not representative of the bad ass I thought I was. Then my life changed, rather dramatically, which is a story for another time, but I started to realize that I didn't know a fucking thing about myself or what I really liked or disliked.

Years go by, and other life altering changes (less dramatic, but eye opening nonetheless) make me decide to actually do something besides work, eat, sleep, repeat. I find triathlon and running.

And I rediscover pink.

It started when I spotted a pink hat with a cat (Puma logo) on it. I was drawn to it. I sat in that store and stared at that hat for 10 minutes deciding whether to get it or not. My internal dialog is something like this:

"I can't wear a pink hat. That is lame. I have a black hat. I wear black."

"It is sooo pretty though. And it has a cat on it. I think that is a sign."

"You will look lame. It will draw attention to you. You are not a 'pink' person."

After several trips around the store, I went back and bought the damn hat. It is the same hat I run in today. It is pink. It is girlie. And it started a revolution. (Ok, dramatic, but it did create a profound change in me)

The girl that would rather fade in to the woodwork because she was "too cool for that", was cheering and yelling to other runners and having fun on the course. She stayed up late with friends to puffy paint (yes, I said puffy paint. It is not just for sorority girls anymore!) race shirts, that had obnoxious sayings like "Run Bitch Run" and "Thank God the Swim is Over."

So I ask, What is wrong with 'girlie'? When did being a 'girl' become a bad thing? Why do we (and by 'we' I mean non-red head women. They get a pass. Pink looks terrible on many of them. I digress...) fear and hate the 'pink'?

You know the most feared animal in the forest? Mama bear. Not papa, mama.

Today, I love being a girl. I don't have to put qualifiers on it, like "I am a girl, but not a 'girlie' girl."

Today, I am 'girlie' enough to comfort a child that has had her feelings hurt by other kids, I am 'girlie' enough to cry until snot pours down my face EVERY TIME I watch Steel Magnolias, but I am also 'girlie' enough to go back to college and get three degrees, I am 'girlie' enough to hold the hand of my friend as he dies of cancer, and I am 'girlie' enough to do any damn thing that I put my mind to.

Yeah, I am a girl, and I love pink. You got somethin' to say about it?


ShirleyPerly said...

Nuff said to me ;-)

Just wanted to say that I love your moniker RBR.

Willie said...

Now I am honestly afraid we may have had the same mother. Not about the pink, never cared much for it much to my fathers delight, but about the life change that occurred when we realized we didn't know who we were or what we liked. I went through the same ordeal a few years ago and came to the same conclusions. I like what I like, world be damned. I am who I am and you can accept that or not, not my problem. I enjoy having fun and will do it however the hell I choose. My whole life changed when I realized I didn't have to fit into the world's little molds anymore. The funny thing is, I have gained so many more friends since I changed. I think people can see through disguises and generally like "real" people better than actors.

I may actually be in California around June 1st! I can't commit just yet but OMG that sounds like fun!!! I looked into flights and may even come on my own accord if I can't arrange a work trip. I have been looking for a June-July marathon(g) and San Diego with RBR would ROCK! I'll let you know.

Andrea N said...

It's like you're in my head! I've always felt the same way about pink, but have started to put a little into my wardrobe. However, I do consider red my signature color.

Hope you're starting to feel a little better!

Tracy said...

Ha Ha. I'm a pink-a-holic. Most of my clothes and belongings are pink and I WAS very much into Barbie. The funny thing is a few years ago I mentioned wanting a John Deere hat (as a half joke) and someone actually found me a PINK one! Complete strangers constantly ask where I got it. I actually found pink cammo pants the other day. I'm broke and they don't quite fit right (yet) but I HAD to have them. What a dork!

Southbaygirl said...

I love pink. Always have and always will~well ok I went thru my all balck phase with the funky hair and dark eyes...but pink came back and now I embrace it! Love it!

Can I come down to San Diego and cheer you two on while drinking mimosas on the sideline???

Anonymous said...

Hmm, not sure what kinda colour I am, varying ... mind you if you looked in my wardrobe currently you'd say "black", but that's all wrong.

I'm a purply/pink person mainly, but only gotten worse since my DD was born, no matter how many differing options I've given her .. she's just pink through and through ... you'd probably love her bedroom, varying shades of pink and lilac, with pink pink and more pink! One day she'll probably grow out of it and go for the goth stage, but for the moment ... we embrace pink! (She is only 4!)

You should've seen DH in the pharmacy trying on pink nail varnish to patch up her shoes ... ended up buying the matching lipstick .... um, hmmm ....

I'm wittering, I'll go now ... hope you're feeling better this morning!

Angela said...

I'm glad you know who you are. This post is great!

Maryland Girl aka Michelle said...

Gee did we all have the I can only wear black phase?!? LOL I love pink especially bright loud pink -not pepto pink for me. I celebrate that I am a girl and a woman - No apologies neeeded!

Unknown said...

Hey girl, I hadn't heard from you on EP so I thought I would check here. This site is a little more confusing for me so it took me awhile to figure out how to comment.
Do you use that Windows Live Writer to create your blogs???
I love pink too. Actually really love purple and pink. My daughter's middle name is even Violet. It would have been her first name but that was a fight. lol.
My laptop is pink, my camera is pink....uh....I'm blank at the moment....but I love it! I can't imagine someone giving you a bad time.... WTH??? What does it matter what color you are wearing??? Do people seriously have nothing better to do???
Anyway, I just wanted to say hi! Love ya girl! ~BRandi

Anonymous said...

LOL - not a word!! ;-)

I'm not much into pastel pink (or any other pastels, for that matter), but bright pinks are A-OK with me. I have a fuschia cell phone and, as far as I'm concerned, it's the coolest thing I've got. I LOVE to see it every time I pull it out of my purse! (Ohh, and I'll post some pics soon of a shirt I've been waiting to get into for about 3 years... it's black and PINK!) LOL

I was looking at your pics as I was reading your post and chuckled a bit. I had never before noticed how much pink you wear while running! But, why would I... or anyone else, for that matter?

It looks great on you!

Calyx Meredith said...

I think your reclaiming pink as a power color is fantastic. I think the bitchypoola at the tri-training is overdue to be smat. Why on earth would anyone be judgmental about what is fun and motivating for someone else?! If she's not secure enough to wear pink - ok fine. Not everyone can look as good in pink as RBR!!

Side note: I grew up with a red headed mom so there wasn't a lot of pink around. It was like there was a rule against her even being near it. She said she always felt left out of the pink club. She has (in the last few years) decided to wear pink anyway - and you know what? There are a few shades that look amazing on her - red hair and all.

I say, "Pink for everyone!" (Everyone who wants it, that is. We won't force it on Willie or adamant goth girls or anything.) And next time the meangirls get you down - let them eat puffy paint!

Shelley said...

I love pink! Its so girly. I was so into Barbie when I was little! Skipper, too! Should we wear pink shirts to Zoo Zoom?

Southbaygirl said...

Hey, I'm thinking of running the Malibu Creek trail Run 25K on April 6th-the trail is PINK! How could I pass that up. That would give me a tough 15 miler before the Nashville Half....which might be good since I'll be working alot.... I have to see how my schedule starts out next week-that will tell me alot. If we end up working a 70 hour work week I may have to rethink some things...I wont know until next week. But I'm going to try to run as much as possible!! If I start off working 15 or 16 hour days it's going to hurt in more ways than I can tell you!!

Southbaygirl said...

oh and I love the misty cool wet stuff because my mom is Scottish and every summer while I was growing up we'd be in Scotland-so I always missed the super hot nasty weather-never really spent time in it until I was older-and by then I realized how much I love the scottish weather-yeah I'm a freak but I embrace it!!!

Tara said...

Pink is hot! I'm getting pink going more in my ensemble as well. Admittedly, I have some catching up to do to equal your collection of pink. But definitely have more than I used to.

6 weeks at counting to SIT...

~ Tara

Anonymous said...

Seriously? Your writing is that which deserved to be published...like in a monthly column of a magazine. I'd read that column and say, "I can't wait to see what she writes about next month."

Also, I didn't know you were running San Diego, good stuff!

Shelley said...

Sure, I can come clean your house! No problem. As long as you don't mind if I break a few dishes and wad up your clothes, cuz thats my preferred method of folding. LOL I HATE DISHES AND LAUNDRY. But I don't mind the toilets. Go figure. And I'm learning to love to vacuum. Watching Roomba is very entertaining. :)

Willie said...

Where oh where is RBR??