Love is a Pink Carnation

Firstly, there are two things you need to know about me:

1. I hate carnations.
I think this dislike stems from seeing them in the grocery store dyed that disgusting snow-cone colored blue or leprechaun green, looking 100% artificial; they’re like the antithesis of what flowers represent. In my opinion carnations are just a step up from Baby’s Breath – a sad, sad substitute for a rose. It’s what you give when you feel obligated to give flowers but really don’t want to, or worse, when you should give flowers but completely forget.

2. I really don’t like pink.
Yes, I’m a ballerina. Yes, I love to wear dresses. But to be completely honest the color pink often inspires my gag reflex. Yuck. There are many things I do and many things I like that by all outward appearances would make me sound like a girly-girl, but honestly I’m not. Well at least I don’t see myself as one. Victoria’s Secret’s ad campaign of “Pink” is completely lost on me. The color looks wretched on my yellow-olive skin tone and something deep within me just rejects it. I feel like Kay Thompson’s character Maggie Prescott in the movie “Funny Face” where at the end of her “Think Pink” number she refuses to be caught dead in it – although the number is quite fabulous.

However recently, my mind has slightly changed toward these two things I’ve railed against for so long. I have Lars to thank for that. And by Lars, I mean “Lars and the Real Girl.”

If you haven’t seen this movie, you absolutely must. Everything about it is brilliant. Everything. From the script to the set design there isn’t one detail that was overlooked. And this is definitely my kind of movie. It’s quirky, its awkward, it’s endearingly odd. It’s a lot like me.
Ryan Gosling proves my point that mustaches are hot. And I absolutely love the charming little farmhouse Lars, his brother Gus and sister-in-law Karen live in. In particular, the “Pink room” where Lars’ “girlfriend” Bianca stays has inspired my design eye. Pink? I know… I was surprised too. But the vintage wall paper and curtains, the sweet chenille bedspread and the amazing wood dresser are absolutely perfect.
In fact this movie redeems pink. It’s like a tread that’s woven throughout this entire film binding it all together. It first shows up in a pink carnation Mrs. Gruner gives to Lars at the beginning of the film. This scene is amazing. Ryan Gosling plays it to perfection. She gives Lars the carnation and tells him to give it to someone he likes, when just at that moment he turns around to see his very cute co-worker Margot saying “hello.” With one thrust of his arm he chucks the carnation into oblivion, and then after saying nothing proceeds to actually run to his car. It’s clear he likes her, but is afraid – afraid of love. During the rest of the movie pink shows up throughout – in apparel and decor – as Lars gradually learns how to love and be loved. And by the end we see another pink carnation, not thrown away, but kept close to his heart (worn on his left lapel).
Love is a pink carnation. And love is not cheap. Rather, it is the most important, most precious and utterly priceless gift we can give and receive. So I guess Lars makes me love both pink and carnations.

Here are two clips I found on YouTube of the beginning and the end of this awesome film. But if you’ve never seen it, DON’T watch the latter clip. Better just watch the whole thing.

You can find the first clip here and the second one here.


One thought on “Love is a Pink Carnation

  1. Anonymous says:

    Just wanna let you know your insight on the theme of pink in Lars and the Real Girl helped me on my homework c:thanks! Also I really liked how you noticed the corsage symbolized love and the placements of it in the beginning and end of the movie.

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