A neighbor once asked me to tour her freshly painted and decorated house and then asked my opinion. It was lovely and well done, I offered. "But ya know, " I couldn't help but add, "my opinion doesn't really matter because I don't live here. You should decorate it in whatever style makes you happy. It's YOUR house." She just stared at me. "You could even carpet the ceiling. It worked for Elvis." She threw her head back and laughed but I was serious.
Green shag carpet covers the ceiling of the Jungle Room at Graceland, Elvis's mansion in Tennesee.
I recently overheard a gardener belittling some of the more conventional fall shrubs as too common for her garden. She pitied the poor idiots who had resorted to stuffing their landscapes with the same plants that populate the grounds of local shopping centers and dentists offices. Where were the exotic, rare, and difficult to grow specimens that announced to the world a REAL gardener lived there? The more she babbled, the more irritated I became.
I'm thankful for every gardener who grows burning bush because they're gorgeous, azaleas because they love them, and Knock Out roses because they're easy. Pink flamingos and concrete fruit baskets may not be my cuppa tea, but if it's yours, drink up! I'm thankful for every gardener who declares to the world, "My garden has never been featured in a magazine and probably never will, I planted giant zinnias in the front yard because they make me happy, and if you don't like my kissing gnomes you can kiss my asster!"