When you’re hiking in the woods with someone you’ve known for the better part of a decade, you’re bound to recycle some questions about the other person. Case in point, if you could be any animal, which one would you be? I’ve always thought it would be cool to be a black tip shark or honey badger, for obvious reasons, but I’ve had a love affair with flamingos since a trip to the Dallas zoo in 1989.

It’s the only animal that makes sense, I’m almost always clad in pink or peach, I squawk strange sounds that are inaudible to most beings, and would spend my entire life in the water if I could. While I might come back as a flamingo in my next life, here are my picks for channeling the sassy and flamboyant creature during this lifetime. What animal would you be?

Background photograph by Chris Leidy.