We bought four large, round, fluffy, expensive pines today to go in the front yard. So large that I would still be out there digging holes next week if I didn't get some help. Actually, I probably would have been the first recorded death by pine if I had tried single handedly to get them out of the back of the truck as well. They would have found me, eventually, in the driveway, under a large potted pine, half eaten by wild bunnies. But that's not the story.
The story is that we only needed three large, round, fluffy, expensive pines. But my need for help required the use of Drew, and the use of Drew required the purchase of a fourth pine to replace the one that he broke. How do you break a pine? You drop it on its head while forcing it out of its pot by turning it upside down and shaking it. Turns out that when you drop a 100-pound pine on its head from a height of about three feet, many of its limbs break off. Then you have a pine stump. An ex-pine, if you will.
The best part of the experience was listening to Drew try to explain to the garden center helper, who speaks English less than fluently, how he broke the pine. The poor fellow could not comprehend how Drew did such a thing, because it never seemed to occur to him that someone would treat a plant that way. All of a sudden, it was like Drew was shopping for a second puppy because the first one wouldn't wake up after he squeezed it too hard.
We promised him to take better care of the replacement pine, but by then he had written us off as another couple of bizarro Americans.
Guilty as charged.