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?
4 hours ago