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Chivalry's Dead

by Jeffrey Parren

and 1800Flowers.com killed it.

A simple gesture
with ideas of grandeur
was the task at hand.

A small milestone.
The first of many to be had.

A month is a month
is a month but this month?

It was different.

When distance is in between,
even the smallest of gestures
have the tendency to resonate.

It seems added mileage
enlarges the impact.

The actual card was to read:
“So eager for the many special occasions
we will get to spend with one another.
Happy Anniversary! Can't wait to hold you
and tell you how much I care
when we see each other once again... -Jeffrey”

Thought. Effort. Time. Heart.
All were put forth
into sending 3 red roses
to the one I can call mine.

Days in advance
the order was placed
to erase any complications.

Confirmation email:
“A smile in the works.”

Monday was to come
and the excitement was tangible.
“I can't wait for her to get them
and smile because of me.”

Monday comes
and has almost passed
(East Coast time.)

“Unavailable” says my phone
at 1:30pm here.
It's 4:30 there.

“Haven't most florists
closed already?”

A message left.

“Yes, Mr. Parren
please call us back
about a situation
concerning your order.”

Apparently the first florist
could not complete the order.

I simply responded:
“Why are you calling me?
Make it happen.”

The accented voice
on the other end
couldn't grasp
the apparent jargon
of my response.

“Just do it!”

It was as if a table at work
had asked me to get ketchup
and the bottle I went to use was
so instead of finding another
I went back to the table
to make sure if it was okay
that I checked another bottle
to see if it had ketchup in it.


The phantom delivery hours
were between 9am and 7pm.

As 4 o'clock approached
I placed a call in search.

The call was also in jest.

Another accented voice
on the other end
tried to appease the situation
by placing a call
that was to never be received.

“The florist did not answer, sir”

“That's because they're closed...”

I decided to give 1800Flowers
the benefit of the doubt.
In the calmest way possible
I would give them a night
to possibly fix it.

I worked the night shift
in the grumpiest way imaginable.

I came home to an email
of apologies and promises
with exceptions.

“Please select something else
of similar value
delivered by UPS/FedEx
to be sent the next available date.”

No thanks!

Today was the anniversary,
not the next available date.

I promptly answered back
asking for and getting
a full credit plus $20
to go to the next order
that I will never place.

I used to think
chivalry was somehow killed
by women's liberation
or something.

Like holding a door
was in some way offensive.

Either way, I was wrong.

Chivalry's dead
and 1800Flowers.com killed it.


Posted on 05/08/2012
Copyright © 2021 Jeffrey Parren

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