I have a lot of respect for personal referrals. When I waitressed in college, I finally started carrying business cards for the girl who cuts my hair because I got tired of writing down her name and phone number every time someone asked for it. And I definitely appreciated the people who actually DID call her and make an appointment – because it finally got to be so many that she gave me a SERIOUS discount on my haircuts.
And I can't tell you how many times I've seen some I-Must-Have-This-Or-My-Baby-Will-Be-Uncomfortable-And-Unhappy-And-Hate-Me-For-Life product in a catalog or baby department and called one of my Mommy friends to get the real scoop. "Yes, Sarah, Colt will probably survive without a contraption to warm the wipes you use on his behind." Word of mouth is very powerful.
Evidently these people agree.
I hesitate to call these people our neighbors, though I guess it's technically true. This house is between our house and the nanny's house — so Jeff and I each drive by it several times a week, and - usually being on our way to either work or home – neither of us had ever stopped long enough to read the sign. Little did we know what we were missing.
About a month ago, we were headed to eat somewhere and decided to take a few extra minutes and drive by "the sign". We parked in front of this house and I am sorry that this photo does not do it justice. This yard is completely packed with trees and plants and bushes and planters – WAY too many for any reasonable people to have in their yard. I'm all for trees. And I'm all for gardens. This house is ridiculous.
And in case you aren't able to read that:
THIS "TREE" WAS PURCHASED FROM AND INSTALLED BY WESTWOOD GARDENS IN THE FALL AT A CO$T OF OVER $100.00! IT WASN'T PLANTED ACCORDING TO THE INSTRUCTION SHEET (THAT THEY GAVE TO CUSTOMERS) THE "TOPSOIL" IT WAS PLANTED IN HAD A STRONG SMELL OF CRUDE OIL & WITHIN A MONTH IT STARTED TO DIE I TRIED TO GET SOMEONE TO COME LOOK AT IT & TELL ME WHAT TO DO. BUT WAS TOLD THAT THERE WAS NO LIVEABILITY GUARANTEE – NOT EVEN FOR A WEEK! COMPARE THIS TO THE TWO WEEPING CHERRY TREES" I GOT FROM LOWE'S (ALONG THE SOUTHERN EDGE OF THE LAWN) FOR $16.00 EACH, WITH A ONE-YEAR LIVEABILITY GUARANTEE!
TREES DON'T LIVE ON REPUTATION ALONE!
I am able to overlook the obvious issues here: all caps, using at least three colors in no deliberate way, and writing a freaking NOVEL when a simple "Westwood Gardens" with a line through it probably would have been just as effective… And are trees "installed"?
Aside from just thinking this was hilarious – which it was - it's also worth mentioning that we sat in front of this poor house for several minutes trying to decide which tree they were complaining about! It was that bad! But if putting up this sign makes these people feel better about their $100 dead tree, and if staging their own private "protest" makes them confident that telling all 12 people who might see that sign on any given day might influence a few of them to boycott Westwood Gardens - more power to 'em. It's a free country.
I blog instead.