RIP, Plastic Pink Flamingo

As a lover of all things kitsch, I thought that I would take a moment to mark the passing of the plastic pink flamingo, made by Union Plastics right here in Massachusetts. Union Plastics has announced its intention to cease manufacture of the tacky birds.

I have a special connection to the pink flamingo. Someone in my hometown started the Society for the Preservation of Artificial Wildlife, and pink flamingo nesting sites were found in various areas in the region. These were reported in the local newspaper, to great fanfare. One time, I saw a pink flamingo nesting high up in a tree in wintertime. My heart was glad, and I was proud that our little area was a sanctuary for Artificial Wildlife. Soon, the little critters will be extinct, and the world will be just a little less wonderful than it was before.

*I did not take this photo.

28 responses to “RIP, Plastic Pink Flamingo

  1. I just read about this the other day, and it made me a little sad. I read it to my husband, and he said something like, “and it couldn’t happen any sooner.” To each his own, I guess.

    My neighbor puts a giant inflatable snowman in her yard every December, and last year it was surrounded by little plastic pink flamingos.

  2. A snowman surrounded by pink plastic flamingos? Now it simply does not get any better than that.

    That seems much more innovative and creative than the “Halloween puked on my yard” house near where I live. But now that Halloween is past, I think they are gearing up for the “Thanksgiving puked on my yard” festivities.


  3. Come Christmastime, I’ll post some of my favorite photos of tacky lawn decor. There was this one house I used to pass on my way to work, though that took the cake. On a long, lonely stretch of highway, this one ugly house had giant, inflated turkeys for Thanksgiving. The Halloween display was tacky; Christmas nearly unforgiveable. The turkeys, however, changed me forever.

  4. Fear Not Dear Yetta the Pink Flamingos will not soon fade from your old stomping grounds. Some different Clubs and Organizations in town now use them to encourage donations to their specific causes. So on any given morning one can wake up to a Flock of Flaming Flamingos on their lawn and they may not be removed until a donation is made or a goal met. Here’s the best part! Then and only then you may, under cover of darkness, deposit said Flamers on some other unsuspecting acquaintances lawn and the process will start all over again!

    NO Flamingos were harmed in the writing of this post….

  5. I didn’t know this! The Horror! Barnes and Noble sells, or used to, a little tiny box set with four plastic flamingoes, a square of fake lawn and a little plastic picket fence, and it came with a tiny booklet on the history of the Pink Flamingo. I have a set on my desk, plus a houseplant decoration of them. I also have a set that sits out on our back porch every year, a gift from my husband, who hates them but knows I love them.

    The horror of not having these on lawns. Can you find the article and post it?

  6. Whoops, that was for a calendar, I think, so no worries. This is the one for the pink flamingo desk set thingy:

  7. Crap, why doesn’t it work? Sorry for the jumble. Here is the isbn at least:
    and it’s called Pink Flamingos Mini Gift Set

  8. That is the best, Yetta! I wanna do that.

    Before Girl, there are a number of articles on it, but here’s the one from Yahoo:

    I’ll see about ordering me a desk set.

  9. Here is the address for the NPR interview with the flamingo designer. Very cool.

  10. so these plastic flamingos are decoys to lure the real ones in so you can hunt them? you yanks are strange birds alright, go hunt lemurs, those buggers are asking for it.

    today is national ‘miss the point day’ just doing my job.

  11. Thank you, Knudsen. Alas, it is too cold around here for real flamingos or lemurs. We have lots of little squirrels, though.

    Happy Miss the Point Day.

  12. Squirrels are from the devil. I tend to think plastic pink flamingoes are from the devil, too, but I will miss them. I’ll post a picture of my neighbor’s display after Thanksgiving.

  13. That’s such a tragic piece of news.
    It even got reported this side of the pond, in fact it got more coverage than the mid term election bickerfest.

    A black day for humankind.

  14. I actually like squirrels; I just couldn’t think of anything comparable to lemurs. Deer just didn’t seem to cut it.

    I am sad about the demise of the tacky. I’m sure someone will pick up the slack, but it won’t be the same.

    We’ve had quite an inter-office discussion about the whole Kerry joke bungling today (I’m sure you can imagine my response).

  15. The Kerry blunder was really something. It makes me a little sick the way it was blown out of proportion.

    About squirrels: we used to have a colony of flying squirrel living in out attic–we actually caught 15 of them and relocated them. Now, we’ve got another colony. I can’t bring myself to open the attic door to set the trap, so I don’t know if they are flying squirrels or just plain walking ones. Either way, I’m suring they’re eating up all the wiring and insulation.

  16. I love the way an alcoholic draft dodger calls a decorated Vietnam vet “degrading and insulting”.

    And the most degrading and insulting thing is the way – as Robyn points out – it has been blown up out of all proportion.
    The original comment was by a guy who’s been a “grunt” and knows what it’s like. The ludicrous response shames Republican America yet again in the eyes of the rest of the world.

    Oh dear, oh dear …

  17. Yeah, I don’t get it. Well, I do get it (the Republicans have nothing to run on, so they’re Swift Boating Kerry again). Hopefully people can see through it, but this being the US, I’m not so sure…

  18. I thought it was a mark on Kerry for other reasons though. 1. he blundered his speech (something that could have happened to anybody), but he had to own up to it. 2. Democrat strategists said that “he lost one election for us. He should just keep his mouth shut.”

    If it hadn’t been picked up by a mic and a press corp, it would have fallen on deaf ears. Too bad.

  19. Oh yeah, no question—he screwed up. The media must have been bored. Whoever says that they are all a bunch of liberals should remember this.

  20. you know what this means. it means grab em up quick because theyre going to be worth pots of cash.

  21. Yep. Hang on to them, if you are in possession of such rare birds.

  22. Squirrels are from the Devil

    Robyn you’re sounding like me more everyday.
    American politics are flashy funny and dumb, they ran a campaign on calling someone a flip flopper and they win, not much choice between Bush and Kerry, a proven twat or an almost certain twat, screw them all and vote Green, at least then you have done your duty and not added to the fire.
    British politics are much more boring but wittier.

    Squirrels are for the weak.

  23. Old Knudsen, I’ve already written about voting Green in the US. I’ve done it before, but I won’t do it again until the neocons are safely in the dustbin of history.

    You and Robyn squirrel away your squirrel hatred and look for squirrelly ways to de-squirrel the world.

  24. As I’m sure Robyn will agree, it Small Town there is the pinnicle of all things tacky lawn decoration… a tiny house decked out in lights on every conceivable object for every single holiday. And while it’s not bad enough that there are hearts or fake shamrocks, or eggs and bunnies — the poor little lady thinks it’s pretty.

    About Kerry: Not having said much on a political nature, I’m not going to start now. Just this thought though: when you say you’ll never apologize for anything you say and then apologize, in writing on your personal website, you kinda leave the door wide open for every one to get their jabs in. You know it has to be a bad day with Hilary is bashing another Democrat.

  25. This is sad news indeed. We have guys here on Long Island, that for a mere case of beer will livin’ your yard up with butt loads of these fine birds. They will be truly disappointed.

  26. Much as I like the little critters, I’m not sure I fancy a a load of them up my butt!

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