Recently, I had a sit-stand desk delivered to my house. It came from a company that usually delivers to businesses, and they brought it in a big truck with the boxes strapped to a wooden pallet, and the guy who delivered it said that he was not permitted to enter my house with it.
I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to get the boxes inside by myself, so I asked if he was permitted to enter my garage with it, and he said that’d probably be ok. I moved my car out into the driveway, and he maneuvered the pallet into the middle of the garage on a rolling cart thingy. I opened up all the boxes and looked at the pieces, as I’d been instructed to do to check for damage and missing parts, but since I didn’t know what I was looking at, I just said I was sure that was all as it should be and signed the form. The guy made to leave.
“Do I get to keep the pallet?” I said, surprised.
“You can if you want, or I can put it back in the truck,” he said.
I have no idea where this came from, but something in me got really excited at the idea of keeping the pallet. I don’t have any idea why, or what I thought I’d do with it. I had this vision of it sitting out in the back yard and coming in handy in some undefined way.
Did I think I’d bust it up and repurpose the wood into a side table? Did I imagine using it as a pedestal for delivering Shakespearean monologues? Did it look to me like it would be comfortable for sitting on?
I don’t know. In the clarity of sober reflection, I can think of not one single use for a pallet, other than moving furniture from a truck to a garage. But at the time, the possibilities were endless.
“I’ll keep it!” I said. “Oh, boy! My very own pallet!”
Later, I did manage to move all the boxes into the house by myself, although they’ll now sit there for the next six months to a year, until I make friends with someone who could potentially put together this very complicated desk in exchange for pizza and beer.
But the pallet.
Turns out, pallets are really heavy. And really, really splintery. I can’t move this one. Not an inch. It’s still sitting there in the middle of the garage, and my car is still outside baking in the August sun, looking at me reproachfully whenever I go in or out.
The pallet seems really pleased with itself.