Pretty in Pink.

Remember that time it was Lynda & Jeff’s 25th wedding anniversary? I do. It was last year. I remember it because it was a milestone, of course, and because Al and I picked out some gorg flowers from a very high end florist in Chelsea, and made special arrangements to get the bouquet into their hotel room before they checked in. I know. I have an acceptance speech on file for the Perfect Progeny Awards, whenever they come into existence. I also remember this because the first thing Lynda said to Alex on the phone (after thank-you’s) was, “Were you aware of how much pink was in this bouquet?”

Lynda.

We weren’t aware because we had sent an eye-less being into the florist with strict instructions to just buy without asking questions or making requests.  And because we know that pink is the last thing anyone wants to see in a floral arrangement

They were actually very pleased with the flowers. You would have to know Lynda to understand that there was no ill-will meant by the comment, which of course in layman’s terms seems to translate to a kind “Did you see this and think it looked nice?” Like the answer might be “No. We thought it looked heinous but we bought it anyway!”. And you’d have to know me to understand that my harshness is nullified by my absurd sarcasm. I can be harsh with myself too. Here goes: The problem with this situation is that I do know how Lynda operates, so here’s where I get insanely stupid: This year for their anniversary, I decided to go out on a limb and buy them flowers.

I do everything right. I link in Alex (who only gives negative feedback on items she dislikes) and Todd (who gives no feedback). I use a website I have used before for sympathy flowers to rave reviews. I get points on my credit card for the purchase. I pick one of their few styles that includes absolutely no pink flowers of any kind, and I plan the color scheme to coordinate with their “Spring has Sprung” theme party the following weekend. Everything short of growing the flowers myself on my tenement windowsill with seeds hand delivered from God Himself. Go. Me.

You can imagine my disappointment, then, when I received a call from the flower company’s customer service, with Lynda already on hold on their other line. Game ender.

The flowers were delivered dead. I had ordered them the afternoon prior, and some how, against all known odds and any recorded rate of biological decomposition, they arrived dead. Lynda was sure to tell me later that it couldn’t have been my fault because they looked so bad upon receipt that they had to have looked awful even to the person who was placing them into the box before shipment. That is how dead they looked. My father even said so, she told me, knowing the solace that comes with everyone’s agreement on their level of craptasticness. 

I told the sales woman to hang up with Lynda and that I would handle it with her separately, and spent the next 25 minutes trying to replace the bouquet, which, as time has told, is no easy process. It required me to say things like, “Now let me be explicitly clear about this. This bouquet can have absolutely no pink in it.” And “She really hates pink. We’re talking accent-level pink only.” I had to set a quota with this woman. One pink flower, with a margin of error of one. And it had to be a spring bouquet because of the Spring Has Sprung party, which Lynda had already told her about over the phone. And I was fine with asking this woman to be a miracle worker. She had already proven she could do the impossible – what with her previous experience of delivering flowers that went from living to dead in 12 hours.

Long story short, we decided on a something similar to the original (roses & irises) or spring mix bouquet with a note to the grower about the use of pink. I called Lynda to tell her and she told me they had promised to send her the same assortment. The next day a spring assortment arrived using only red and blue flowers to mimic the original bouquet. A tragically dark hybrid bouquet for the Spring Has Sprung party. FAIL.

And all this after the woman had initially tried to convince me that the flowers had arrived dead because I sent them to New Jersey, where the weather was bad.

A few days later, after Spring Had Sprung in style, (bringing with it tons of perfectly live bouquets from guests), I got a surprise shipping confirmation in my e-mail. The flower company had re-sent the original assortment, just in time for Lynda to put it in a vase before leaving to go on vacation.

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