Life of Carmen, Zen & Dharma

A little pink notebook

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI am having an identity crisis in the fancy-ass stationery store on Granville Island. A little pink notebook is messing with my head.

You see, I am the Kind of Person who carries a notebook all the time. It is the repository and record of my life, from to-do lists to major epiphanies. I get twitchy when I don’t have a notebook (and working pen) within reach. It is what people see when they see me. The notebook is me, it defines who I am. I am the Kind of Person whose notebook is black—serious, beat-poet, anarchist black.

My current notebook has been with me for almost two years, and it is full. A standard little moleskin bought in New Mexico, it has a Georgia O’Keeffe postcard glued on the front and a Cortes Bike Gang sticker on the back; it is battered and ratty and ready for the archive. This one actually isn’t black, to be honest—it is deep forest green. But even the green was a stretch.

I am certainly not the Kind of Person to have a hot-pink leather notebook. It’s not me and I don’t want it. But damn it. That pink notebook wants me. I look over my shoulder to see if anyone’s watching, pick it up, give it a sniff. It smells faintly, sexily, of cow. I put the notebook down.

Turning away, I select a no-nonsense black Moleskin from the rotating display and carry it toward the cash. But then I stop and turn back. The pink notebook beckons again from the shelf, with the little kissing sound you would use to call a squirrel to take a peanut from your hand. I pick it up again. I turn it over, stroking its cover and its cream-coloured leaves. This notebook, that wants me so bad—well it isn’t just pink, it is hot pink. And it is the perfect size—a centimeter bigger than the black Moleskin. It has an inner pouch, nice opaque unlined pages, a place-finding ribbon and a sturdy elastic band. The elastic is matching pink. The black moleskin is covered in fake leather, but the pink one is the real thing. Real, buttery, baby-skin leather. It is perfect.

But…the pink. I can’t have a pink leather notebook—it is so Not Me. My notebook is a commitment; it has to be right. What will people think?

I come to my senses and put down the pink. Carry the black moleskin to the counter and open my wallet. Take out my debit card. Stop. Turn back to the notebook section and this time i swear, the pink notebook winks at me. C’mon, it says. C’mon. Take me home.

I open the pink notebook to the first virgin page. Pencilled lightly in the corner is the price: $14.99. The serious black moleskin is $17.99.

OK. Done. Sold.

Now I am a person with a little pink notebook. I’m that kind of person. Who am I now?

6 Comments on “A little pink notebook

  1. I get it. Happened to me too…in such a powerful way that I started a whole project around it 🙂 Red was always, always my favorite color. Until pink.
    Maybe pink is a more powerful color than red ever gave it credit for. I can red’s face now, totally pissed off at the idea that pink could beat it.
    Enjoyed your post!

  2. I found a notebook today, an empty never used Navy issue notebook that had been owned by a Sailor in WW2. I blew the 70 year old dust from it’s edges.

  3. When I am an old woman I shall wear more purple with a red hat that doesn’t go… I shall spend my pension on brandy and summer gloves and satin sandals, and say ‘I’ve no money for butter.”

    Read Jenny Joseph’s famous poem, “When I Am An Old Woman.”

    Heck I’m not an old woman yet and decided to live this way now! Got tired of black, gray, white, and neutral colors. Dance for no reason, dress up to go grocery shopping, take bubble baths, join a drumming circle, teach yourself something new, wear clothing that doesn’t match. Girls just want to have fun.

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