Tuesday, March 24, 2009

The Blue Flamingo

Right now, I have a choice.

I could rewrite my paper about the painting The Birth of Venus for my history class or I could write a little something-something. And I choose: A little somethin-something.

This is a writing exercise where I pull a story out of nowhere, so don't just me if it's lame:

Once upon a time, there was a Flamingo named Flamboya. Flamboya the Flamingo was not like other flamingos.

She was blue.

All the other flamingos were pink. Her mother, her father, her brothers, her sisters, her friends, even her flamingo toy. They were not all the same shade, but they were all the same color: PINK. When she was a little flamingo, before she could stand up on one leg, her mother would tell her how special she was.

Her mother had never known a blue flaming before, either, but she told Flamboya that she should be proud of being different. She should be proud of being blue. She reminded her how everyone wanted to see her when she was born. No one, not anyone, had ever seen a blue flamingo. Everyone wanted to see her. She was beautiful, her mother told her.

This made Flamboya like her blue feathers. She liked that they set her apart from all the pink in the world. She liked to be the color of the sky. She was shy, but she liked that she could be seen. She was not ashamed of being blue. Then one day, Flamboya met a new flamingo.

"My name is Sunshine," the new flamingo told her.
"My name is Flamboya," Flamboya said shyly.
Sunshine laughed. "Your name is funny. Girls shouldn't have 'boy' in their name."
Flamboya did not know what to say.
Sunshine continued, "Why are you blue?"
Flamboya did not know what to say. She did not know why she was blue.
Sunshine kept laughing until she strutted away.

Flamboya went home and asked her mother why she was blue. Her mother said she did not know why Flamboya was blue, either, but that she loved her even more because she was blue. She thought Flamboya was the most beautiful flamingo in the world. Flamboya felt better.

She did not feel better the next day.

When she left her house in the morning to play with her friends, Flamboya saw Sunshine standing in the middle of them.
"Flamingos are not supposed to be blue," Sunshine taunted her. "Flamingos are not supposed to be orange or yellow or green or purple. Flamingos are supposed to be pink."
Flamboya said, "I am a flamingo and I am blue. Blue is a pretty color, too."
Sunshine ignored her.

"I have never seen a blue flamingo," Sunshine continued, "Maybe you are not a flamingo. Maybe your dad was a bluebird."

Flamboya did not know what to do. She looked at her friends for help. They did not say anything. Instead, they looked at the ground or looked at the sky. Flamboya walked away. She did not know what else to do.

Sunshine did not stop there. For two weeks she made fun of Flamboya every chance she got. One day, she told her she should leave Flamingoville. Flamingoville was for flamingos, she told Flamboya. They were not for blue birds.

Every night, Flamboya talked to her family about Sunshine. Her mother told her to be nice to Sunshine. Maybe Sunshine was just sad. "Sunshine is not sad," Flamboya told her mother, "Flamboya is mean." Flamboya's brothers and sisters agreed. Flamboya was mean to them, too.

The next morning, Flamboya went on a walk all by herself. She did not want the other flamingos to see her. For the first time in her life, she was ashamed she was blue.

As she walked, Flamboya came across the field of magic pink flowers. She stopped to look at the flowers dancing in the wind- and then she saw something. Flamboya saw something she had never seen before. She had to rub her eyes to make sure she was not imagining.

When she opened her eyes, she saw it again - A YELLOW flamingo. The flamingo was picking flowers in the middle of the field. She was all alone. Flamboya had to talk to her. She had found a flamingo who did not have pink feathers- she knew they would be best friends.

Flamboya ran to the yellow flamingo. When she got there, she stopped. She knew this yellow flamingo. She had come to town a few weeks before. The flamingo was Sunshine.

Sunshine looked up from her flowers. She saw Flamboya and dropped them.

"You're-- you're yellow!!" Flamboya exclaimed. She tried not to point at her. Her mother had told her that was rude.

Sunshine hung her head. "I know."
"But you're always pink. How are you yellow?" Flamingo did not know what to think

Sunshine hung her head farther. "When I lived in Flamingo Hill, everyone made fun of me. They called me canary. They said I was not a flamingo because I was yellow. Then we moved to Flamingville and I found these flowers that turn my feathers pink."

"Why would you do that? Why would you not be yellow?" Flamboya was amazed.

"I did not want to be made fun of. And then, when I met you, I was afraid. I thought that if we were friends, the other flamingos would make fun of me, too. So I said you must be a bluebird."

"I am not a bluebird," Flamboya said. "And you are not a canary. We are flamingos."
Sunshine did not say anything. She looked so sad. Flamboya felt bad for her.

"I have an idea," Flamboya suggested, "How about you stop eating the flowers? You do not need to be pink. Just be yellow. Yellow is pretty. Like the sun."

"What if we get made fun of?"

Flamboya thought for a moment. "If we get made fun of, I promise to be your best friend forever and ever."
"Really? Even though I made fun of you?"
"YES!" Flamboya exclaimed.
Sunshine smiled.

Flamboya and her new friend made the short walk back to Flamingoville. When they arrived, everyone looked at them. They had never seen a yellow flamingo before. They came and talked to Sunshine and Flamboya. When Sunshine explained that she was really yellow, everyone laughed.

But they did not laugh to make fun of her. They laughed because they were having fun. Flamboy and Sunshine went to the playground with their new friends singing, "Flamingos are not just pink. Flamingos are yellow and blue and red and green and orange! Flamingos are not just pink."

And they lived happily - and colorfully- ever after.

The End.