1. pinky finger
  2. a baby mouse. Conflicting stories are "while they're still pink" or "the size of the end of your pinky finger"
  3. somewhere between whitey and reddy
Return to-- Serious Sam
(aka Blinky, aka Binky)

A pint-sized reptiloid who hangs out at the hidden Sacred Yards at Luxor. Upon first laying eyes upon Sam (who towers over him to roughly the same degree as the Highlanders tower over Sam -- sweet justice :)), he pleads Sam for mercy.

Curb your (by now finely-honed) alien killing instincts. The little guy's no threat to you, and stepping on him only brings down trouble -- a bizarre HAL-9000-esque voice intones 'Oh my god, they killed Pinky!' and Pinky's bigger brother teleports in to see what's going on. Can't we all just get along?

Last winter I had a fevered dream: glass cases hung beneath every stop sign on route 60, and in each case a severed right hand, palm out, the hands of offenders hung in space as a warning to those who eyed the line. Prostitute hands with long bright nails, homeless hands packed with the refuse and grit of the streets, delinquent hands, scarred from broken bottles. When I woke I knew that Pinky had to be among those severed right hands.

Pinky, as we called him, stood at six feet tall, a rail thin black man in a blue floral dress, never without a hand mirror, who would walk the length of route 60 while waving and blowing kisses at the drivers, laughing hysterically as suburban housewives gaped impotently from the heights of their SUV's. Pinky's proud shadow pierced the orange haze of the setting sun across the beige stucco fractal of franchises and prefab houses.

I once heard a cop and an irate young man discuss Pinky in a coffee shop.

"Can't you arrest him for being a distraction or somethin'?" The young man asked in a thick southern accent.

"Nope, he's not breaking any laws."

A pause.

"Do you suppose that's a spiritual or an emotional problem that he's got?"

"Maybe a little o' both" the cop replied while staring into his coffee

I wanted to suggest neither, and I will regret to the day I die not doing so. I'll always regret not walking right up to those two to point out that Pinky was the happiest looking person in this town.

The atavism of this place caught up with Pinky eventually. My mother found his obituary during her grim morning survey of the daily paper. A sullen, younger man stared back from between the newsprint, his hair a natural shade of black, cut close. Dead, she didn't know how, although she said later that she had heard rumors that he had been beaten to death.

So this piece is my personal ode to Pinky, a floating memorial to a man who may or may not be dead, for unknown reasons. My only hope is that I do better than a faded high school photo in my description, that my eulogy reads more honestly than the formal newsprint obituary.

The name of a character played by Harpo Marx in Duck Soup (1933). As with all of Harpo's characters, Pinky is a mute and a moron, but in that loveable sort of way. Much less creepy than that dastardly Chaplin.

Together with Chicolini, Pinky is a spy hired by the Sylvanian Ambassador, Trentino, in order to dig up dirt on Rufus T. Firefly, leader of Freedonia. In a memorable scene (aren't they all?), Trentino asks Pinky for Firefly's record, and without hesitation, Pinky pulls a vinyl record out of his coat. Trentino, flabbergasted by the spies' continued ineptitude, exclaims "No! No! No!", and within a second, Pinky flings the record into the air, whips out a pistol and shoots it, clay pigeon style.

"And the boy gets a cigar."

Pinky is one of the few Harpo characters that doesn't play the harp. There is a short (and quite funny) moment in Duck Soup where Pinky sees an open grand piano and has a tug of the strings, much to the annoyance of Chicolini, only to have the lid come crashing down on his hands. That's about as far as his musical prowess goes in this movie, which is a welcome respite for some modern-day viewers, who find the instrumental interludes in the Marx Bros. movies rather boring (not me!).

Pinky is probably the nicest Harpo character as well. There isn't nearly as much stealing, cheating and chasing blondes as there is in some of the other Marx Bros. flicks.

Pinky also appears as a dog catcher in Horse Feathers. But that's not as funny.

And then there's the Pinky of Pinky and the Brain fame. I wonder where they got his name from.

Pink"y (?), n. Naut.

See 1st Pink.


© Webster 1913.

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