The holiday displays have come down for the season at most of the houses along my dog walking route (I no longer count the illuminated metal cactus as a holiday display since the owners turn the lights on year round), so I was a little shocked to find:
when I left my house for walks in the wee hours of the morning (the flock of flamingos definitely wasn’t there last night when I was mowing the lawn). Initially I shuddered in horror at the idea of Valentine’s flamingos and racked my brain as to why the neighbors had lost their minds. However, as I peered through the dark I spied a sign at the back of the tacky display (cropped from the photo to try to provide a little privacy for my neighbors) declaring it something related to the local high school’s Project Graduation. These particular parents are Spanish speaking immigrants, and they’re intensely proud of their oldest daughter preparing to graduate. I don’t know the family very well, but I think she’s expected to go to college as well.
So I’m torn. The flamingos sporting red and white leis are incredibly tacky, and I want to smack my forehead in disgust and dismay when I see them, but the love and pride behind paying for the PTA or Student Council or whatever committee put these monstrosities in the yard makes me smile. I know that despite both parents working long hours they are very involved in their children’s lives, and they want their children to be educated and not have to work as hard. If every child had parents who cared this much the world would be a better place.
Hopefully, the flamingos will fade away after Valentine’s Day, but I’ll try to avoid shooting them too much side eye until they come down. They’re ugly as sin, but they represent something beautiful that the world could use more of on a regular basis.