Spoke 70 miles south of here at a townhall meeting today. About 80 people were present. I was speaking about peat, a favorite topic, when a woman raised her hand and said, "I did just like you said and put peat on my garden and it didn't grow!"
Wow. I didn't know what to say. She had gotten her peat at Pete's Peat, which I had recommended last year at the same town hall. "We had only pumpkins, every thing else was dead," she said, as her husband looked at the floor with a little smile. It looked as if he had tried to stop her from speaking, but failed. She was too excited to show me up.
Afterwards, the husband came up to talk. He seemed sheepish. "Yeah, we got the soil four miles north of here and three miles west," he said, oddly specific. "What happened was the guy took a track hoe and reached out into the middle of the swamp and got some peat."
Just then, the wife strode towards us. "So that was at Pete's Peat?" I said.
"Well," the man said before his wife screeched, "Yes, it was Pete's Peat!"
Well, Peat's Peat is nowhere near four miles north and three miles west of where we were. And he does not have a track hoe. And Pete would never simply take muck from the center of the swamp and plop it in somebody's truck.
What happened, I finally figured out, was Mr. Husband told his insistent wife that he would get some Pete's Peat for her stupid garden. In the back of his mind, he had a plan. He knew a buddy who had some peat in his swamp and had a track hoe. He would get some for free there and wouldn't have to drive all the way to Peat's Peat and pay full price.
He came home with some worthless crap and put it on the garden, only to have the useless muck kill everything except the pumpkins. His wife now blames Pete's Peat (and me) for their disaster. And the man hasn't had the guts to fess up yet that the junk he put on their garden was nothing close to Pete's Peat.
Given the woman's sheer delight in embarrassing me in front of 80 people and ragging unfairly on Pete's Peat, I suspect she got her end of the bargain. The man should confess and make her joy complete: Having ragged on me, she could then focus her rage on her husband and milk the whole thing for more expression of anger.
For his part, I think her husband was a despicable coward for not fessing up and saving the reputation of Pete's Peat (not the actual name) and myself.
But you just have to laugh!
Typical married stuff.