Sometimes Snails

Sometimes Snails

I’ve been told I’m one of the hardest people on the planet to buy things for.

Family and friends typically stress over those gift-giving occasions like birthdays, anniversaries, and Christmas.

I don’t—they do.

Perhaps I’m hard to buy for because I don’t really care about the stuff money can buy. I’d rather have peace and calm and an afternoon with a cat with a fuzzy unicorn blanket (of which I have plenty—both cats and fuzzy unicorn blankets). Another reason is that if I see something I want, I typically get it for myself, thereby robbing others of the joy of gift wrapping that bobble, blanket, pen, or whatnot themselves.  

When I show interest in an object, say unicorns, I tend to receive lots of unicorn gifts. I have a small — albeit unintended — unicorn collection now. (Not by any stretch as large as the one that I had as a child. That one likely pushed 300 pieces...)

I also have a fountain pen collection, and I enjoy the occasional “treasure hunt” to locate vintage tropical bird figurines. They go nicely in our sunroom.

I also like owls. I’d like to go to one of those owl nurseries and play with orphaned owelettes that have learned how to ride mini skateboards. What fun! Or I’d like to spend an afternoon at a rescue that rehabilitates injured owls. That would be enlightening.

My family knows I like owls. The Hubs bought several nice ones for me for a birthday or anniversary here and there. Right now, they’re in a drawer, though. (The unicorns are in a box…).

Because Castiel Monroe, my grandkitty, is insane, and when the Adult-ish Male Child drops by with this cat (who loves car rides more than I love unicorns), Cass takes out his insanity all over my house.

So for the protection of owls, horned horses, and Cass, I’ve put them away until the supply chain loosens up and the curio cabinet I want becomes available. (The vintage toucans and parrots are safely behind such a barrier. At least I think they are…)

Not long ago, the Hubs and Adult-ish Male Child accompanied me to pick out flowers (I have no idea why I’m trying real, live flowers again. But alas… it was something to do.) I like purple. Little Miss likes purple. But sometimes, just sometimes, I’d like a different hue.

But the Hubs and Adult-ish Male Child (especially him, though I can’t figure why), would point me toward purple pansies, purple petunias, purple, purple, purple.

Sometimes red might be nice.

But we already started with purple, so here we go. Four purple petunia plants to match the pretty purple pansies I got for Mother’s Day. (Dear Hubs, they really are pretty, and I really do like them. This post isn’t about purple pansies…)

Then the Hubs sees an end-cap display of various critter planters. “Hey, look! There’s an owl!” (He loves pointing out all the owls when we’re out). “Do you like those?”

“They’re okay.”

“Do you want one?”



“I like the snails better.” I wasn’t trying to be difficult or obstinate, but I suppose I came across that way.

To which the Hubs says he can’t see any snails. Because he was focused on the owls.

“I don’t want any of those planters, actually.”

“But they’re owls.”

And snails. Don’t be snobbish with the snails. Besides, I didn’t want any new planters because that would’ve meant having to pick out more flowers. Purple, probably.

And then the Adult-ish Male Child says he would’ve picked owls out for me, too.

But hey, guys? Sometimes snails would be nice. Sometimes red works, too.

Sometimes changing things up makes life interesting. Get out of the rut.

(Little Miss Muse begs to differ. She has her standard stash of Muse fuel and fidget items, and she declares she will not deviate from grape bubble gum, purple soda, firecrackers and lavender Stilettos. Purple glitter is also the only glitter that works… She cries from the top of the bookshelf that she’s not in a rut; these things are vital to her creative process.)

I didn’t realize I was in a total rut with my go-to read-for-enjoyment choices until I signed up for a class in July. The required reading is entirely outside my preferred genres. Titles I would never have considered giving a second thought. Because they weren’t owls or unicorns.

They were snails. Red snails, even.

Per the class’s instructions, I won’t discuss particulars here, but folks, there’s a wide, wide world of cool stories out there.

This summer, try reading something outside your “norm.” You may find you’ll always prefer owls and unicorns, but sometimes snails can pack an impressive punch.

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