“You need to sign my garden hose,” my friend Carl said.
I looked up, feeling confusion bloom across my face.
This is it, isn’t it? This is the sign that I’ve made it BIG in the author world, isn’t it? Three-hundred and a bit copies sold doesn’t exactly equate to Hollywood agents knocking at my door, but everyone measures success differently.
Maybe success is that I finished a book in the first place. Or that people want me to sign their novels in the first place.
I’m usually happy that somehow people like it when I devalue the book they bought by signing it. This is a new one. Why the hell would someone want me to sign a garden hose?
Oh god, I hope he’s talking about an actual garden hose.
Turns out that he was. Whew. 100 ft expandable garden hose made with a stretchy/spongy polymer plastic. High-quality stuff.
Carl wanted me to sign it because Amazon gives non-Prime members free shipping, but only after they pass a certain price threshold. If the hose came about because of the book then it only makes sense that I should sign both, right?
And it’s ALL about the free shipping, of course.
So as we got to talking about it, he explained why he wanted a hose in the first place. You see, a few years ago Carl had a few Christmas trees in his backyard. Ghosts of Christmas (Christmuses?) past.
So what does one do with an old and incredibly dry Christmas tree? Well, you either throw it out, chop it up or burn it whole. Fortunately (or unfortunately, depending on who you ask) a couple of us came over for a bonfire.
Guess what option we went with.
We got to talking about that night a few years later. Carl was legitimately concerned that the fire was too high. He was thinking “What do I do if the tree above us catches on fire?”
And, most importantly for this story,
“I need a garden hose so that these idiots don’t burn down my house”
*Disclaimer* I don’t know for sure that that was the vernacular that Carl would use, but for the intents and purposes of this blog, we’ll go with that. It’s funnier.
It’s funny how all these things connect over the years. A story turns into another story. All of it woven together with invisible threads. And the thing that really gets me is that you never know until after the fact.
We didn’t know that having a bonfire and a few drinks and burning a Christmas tree would come back years later in a free shipping purchase of a garden hose off of Amazon. We were just having a good time.
That’s still one of my favourite nights ever. I don’t remember what we talked about, or what the weather was like or what time of year it was. I don’t even remember what was happening in my life at that time, if I was seeing someone or how things were going at my job.
I just remember that it was fun.
Sometimes there are those nights where it’s just you and the moment, and the moment is divine.
I wanted to write more this week – about how I can’t seem to decide on an ending for my new book and other cool stuff like that, but I have to go sign a garden hose.
SO, what did we learn this week?
- Carl’s “recommended for you” section on Amazon is going to be filled with garden hoses. Cause, you know, once you get that garden hose fix there ain’t no going back.
- No good stories happen when you’re in bed by 9 PM. And, years later, you don’t care about the sleep you missed that night. You care about the memory, though.
- Everybody defines success differently, and that’s okay. For me, it’s all about being happy. And maybe selling a few more books.
- Christmas trees are highly flammable when they’ve been in your back yard for three years.
- Keep fit and have fun!
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