Ah, flamingos! Those bright pink birds that signal summer time – summer time anytime of the year. There is just something about them that touches my heart and makes me smile. I LOVE pink flamingos – you know the glow in the dark plastic ones that the word kitsch was invented to describe. Yes, I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE them! There is just something about them that makes me want to stand up just a little taller, put my hand on my hip, grin an half grin, and say, “lead me no into temptation? Hell no! Don’t bother, I am the short cut!” Somehow I look at a pink flamingo and I find myself channeling Mae West and Yogi Berra all rolled into one.
So, you know I was so very sad earlier this summer when I learned that Don Featherstone had died. At the ripe old age of 21 when Mr. Featherstone was working for Union Products in Massachusetts, he invented the pink flamingo lawn ornament for his company. Imagine! At 21! What insight! What genius! What joy he brought to the world! . . . well, to me anyway.
So, here’s to you Mr. Featherstone! May you rest in joy, cradled in appreciation for the color and delight you brought to our world!
And here’s to the flamingo! A gregarious wading bird, child of the crane family, symbol of individuality and balance (go watch one calmly standing in the water on one foot), always outgoing and maybe just a little flirtatious, ever true to self while loyal to the flock – flamingos like swans mate for life. I have read that the spirit of the flamingo is a healer of the heart and of emotional imbalances – and who can’t use a little bit of healing and emotional balance in their lives?
In the spirit of perpetual summer, let us all raise a glass with a little umbrella in it to Don Featherstone and the pink flamingo!!