It’s early, but Pink Week is upon us. Pink Week is that first string of warm days when the snow melts and the ground dries, grass threatens with a hint of green, tree branches boast swollen, horny buds, and people start walking around with their shirts off, offering their pink skin to the pagan gods of Spring. It’s only fifty degrees out, but in spring, fifty feels like eighty.
If you have pale pink skin in July, you’re pasty. In February, you’re intrepid. Not pretty, quite, but Pink Week has its own kind of beauty, much the same as a mother robin does when she pukes worms into her babies’ wide-open mouths.
I took my lunch outside on the patio today. (Fully clothed. You’re welcome.) The air was still cool but the sun felt warm. I drew a deep breath of fresh spring air, forgetting as I do every year that the early spring doesn’t smell like daffodils, but rather like three months’ worth of newly melted dog doo.
My lawn guy uses organic fertilizer. It smells like wet corn flakes. He says it’s made from chickens, and I don’t ask if he means chicken droppings, or chicken feed, or, well, you know…chickens. “This fertilizer is so safe that if your dog ate it, she’d just get fat!” he boasts. Yes, and she’d recycle it in her little Pla-Doh factory way, and that’s taking the whole “green” thing too far.
As I exhale my first deep lungful of corn flakes and poopcicles, I hear the sweet, optimistic sound of a cardinal calling for his mate. He is immediately drowned out by a passing Harley. I know it’s fun to be on a noisy motorcycle—I once earned a citation for disturbing the peace—but I’m not on a motorcycle now, so I contribute a bird of my own, and loudly sing a song of spring entitled, Shut The Fuck Up You Self-Centered Arrogant Jackass. I don’t remember who wrote it. Maybe Henry Mancini.
If I finish this essay quickly I’ll knock off a little early and go for a walk in the sun. If you wear black it feels warm enough that you don’t need a coat. Too early yet to slip my tender pink feet into flip-flops, though—there’s still a whole lotta thawin’ goin’ on.