The Pansies in the heart of the Texas capital, Austin, were just about ready to celebrate their national holiday when a deliveryman named John R. “Pansy” Moore took to the skies and blew them up.
Moore had been delivering flowers to his clients since 2001, when he and his wife started a floral company called Lava, which became a go-to destination for people who wanted to show off their flower wares.
The flowers Moore brought to the party were not the ones his wife had brought, but they were the kind that they thought would be popular.
Moore, who had grown up in Houston and was raised in Texas, had been planning his birthday gift for his wife, a longtime floral collector.
“I’d never thought I’d be doing a gift for a friend,” Moore told Newsweek.
But in January 2001, Moore said, he decided he had to do something special for his beloved Texas state flower.
He called his wife.
The first thing she said was, “I don’t have any flowers left, but I want to bring you something.”
The couple decided to do the thing that they loved the most: give the flowers away.
It’s a tradition in Austin.
Moore said he wanted to use the tradition to pay tribute to a local business.
In the late ’80s and early ’90s, when the Pansys lived in Austin, the flower shop they opened at the corner of the city’s west and north sides was the only flower shop in town, Moore recalled.
Moore told his clients he would deliver the flowers to their doorsteps, and the women would open their doors and bring them flowers that Moore personally had purchased and kept.
It was the tradition that Moore would bring to his guests and that his wife would keep.
But for the first time, Moore decided to try something new.
“We decided that we were going to do a gift, and we were just going to give it to every one of them,” he said.
“They didn’t have to do anything.”
Moore was excited about the idea, but he was worried that if he were to deliver the gifts in person, he would miss the opportunity to make a statement.
“That’s what makes this so special, that you get to know your customers and know them really well,” Moore said.
In order to deliver flowers, Moore’s employees would walk around with balloons, which they then inflated to the size of the flowers, and then they would throw them in a box and leave them there for the recipient to pick.
Then, as Moore explained to Newsweek, they would leave the box behind.
It would be left there for another day or two until the recipient picked it up, and they would pick up the balloons, then deliver them to Moore’s door.
The tradition is that the first delivery of flowers goes out on a Thursday, so when the time came to deliver them on Friday, Moore wanted to make sure that it was a good one.
So on January 1, 2001, he delivered three balloons to his door in front of a couple of dozen people at a local flower shop.
He also delivered flowers to several friends and family members, and he even made a special delivery to the governor of Texas, Rick Perry.
The day after the delivery, Moore told reporters that the governor had been “absolutely blown away by my delivery.”
“I’m going to be honest with you: I had no idea,” Moore added.
“He actually called me a couple days later and said, ‘Thank you, I’m just so happy that I found you.'”
The Porsys said they had never received a gift like this before, but their delivery of the national holiday was the highlight of Moore’s day.
Moore was ecstatic.
“It’s a pretty cool feeling to have this recognition,” he told Newsweek, “but I don’t know if we’ve ever done anything like this in a flower shop.”
Moore and his employees have a tradition of delivering flowers that goes back to the mid-1800s, and it goes back even further to the beginning of the nation, when people would get flowers and leave the bouquets in the mail, and people would leave flowers in their homes and bring flowers back home for the next person to bring home.
“A lot of people just didn’t understand,” Moore remembered.
“And a lot of times it was because they didn’t know that people would do something like this.”
The tradition of flowers delivery dates back to at least the 1800s, but it was not always easy for people to understand.
People were more used to getting their mail by the post office, so delivery was not a big deal.
The Pinsys were not alone in the tradition of making special deliveries, but many people didn’t like it.
“People were trying to put something together that was not true,” Moore recalled, “and they were trying