It seemed like a simple request.
It was Valentine’s Day and I made a quick decision on the way home to surprise my wife and 2 girls with a rose for each of them. Now, Amy and I decided years ago, right or wrong, good or bad, that we don’t do anything special for holidays (except Christmas) – no gifts, no cards, no flowers, etc. We try to do the “special” things on a whim, without expectation, on any day we choose. So, my deciding to get the flowers on this day, was not about a lack of planning; actually, it was more a breach of our family etiquette. But I was willing to take that chance.
The flower shop I stopped at is along one of my many routes home. Generally nice people, nice supply, and nice atmosphere. But…did I mention it was actually Valentine’s Day – The Day – that I stopped in? Well, you might have guessed what I found out. I walked in and asked about some single stem roses, and received a slightly condescending chuckle from the woman behind the counter. Not verbatim, but something like this: “It’s Valentine’s Day today. We don’t have any roses”. Not bad, but, hello, I know it’s Valentine’s Day. No need to remind me of the obvious. Anyway, it was more the tone that got me – sort of “Hellooooo, anyone home? There are no flowers at a flower shop on Valentine’s Day, you fool!” Now, she didn’t say that, but it felt like she did.
Well, I was offended. Not in a bruised self-image sort of way. More in a I’m-not-shopping-here-anymore-no-way kind of way. And I haven’t – two years and counting. Too many other flower shops in the area.
And really, as I think about it, is it that silly to expect roses to be available on Valentine’s Day, at a flower shop? I’m a business guy and I kinda think they should be. Maybe I should have been the one with the condescending response: “Hellooooo, do you know it’s Valentine’s Day?! What kind of flower shop has no roses on Valentine’s Day?!”
But that would be offensive.