I mean, with a pocket full of rocks and a house made of glass, there isn’t a much more intriguing scenario I can think of. Sure, throwing mini mandarin oranges in a house made of chinese chicken salad, or throwing chocolate bars in a house made of peanut butter or throwing thumbtacks in a house made of cork could be mildly fun…
…but rocks in a glass house? Priceless.
The situation, of course, would be bittersweet for you — having grown up as a small child hoping to someday become a world-reknowned architect. You would have been a fan of Mike Brady on The Brady Bunch less for his strong authoritative hand and more because he was an architect. You’d probably say things to your parents like, “When I grow up I’d like to be an architect and build houses just like Mr. Brady,” to which they’d pat you on your little head and say, “Son, you can do whatever you want if you put your mind to it.”
Those words would echo in your head through high school and college, eventually driving you to become a full-time architect in one of the city’s largest and most well-regarded firms.
Sure, you’d be happy — you’d be involved in building parks and malls and houses for the elite in the rich parts of towns. You’d have a kid and a family and you’d be more financially stable than most of your friends. But at night, when you’d go home and you’d sit down at your drafting table in the back office, you’d pull out the plans for a house that you only dreamed about. A house that you weren’t sure could ever be physically built…
A house made of nothing but glass.
Sheets of glass, hundreds of feet high — they wouldn’t have such things in the States. You’d have to take a year off from your job to travel the world in order to find the one place in the Middle East where such a thing could be manufactured. There would be the months of learning the language just so you could negotiate a deal that wouldn’t make building such a house cost-prohibitive. Your wife and familiy would grow weary of the traveling and the obsession with the glass house, but you would strive to reach the one goal that you had always had.
And then you would find the site where you wanted to build your glass house.
Atop a grassy hill, overlooking the Atlantic ocean, nestled in among the brush and trees of a lush coastal town. The local mayor and citizens would welcome you and your family and your hundreds of tons of glass sheets — hoping that such a glass house would drive tourism dollars through the roof and bring peace and harmony to a town that had been (for the last few years, at least) locked in an evil battle of wills over the four-way stop sign down at Main and First. You would bring hope and joy to a group of 1,399 people in a coastal town who could use the kind of happiness that a glass house would bring.
And then construction would begin.
Three long years of construction. Three long years of mistakes and cracked panes and wind and water and the kind of damage that would dissuade lesser architects. But you would stand strong in the face of adversity and realize your lifelong dream of building a house made totally of glass. Glass walls, glass floors, glass staircases, glass windows, glass pocket doors, glass sinks, glass chairs, glass carpeting (shards of glass, FYI) and much much more. Your wife and family would revel in the fact that you were an honourable man who had achieved his goal…
And all would be good.
I would get the invitation to the housewarming in the mail that Fall. When I had opened the card, I would marvel at the shards of glass that had thematically fallen out onto my carpet and I would re-arrange the pieces back together in order to read the words you had etched upon them. A housewarming in a house made totally of glass, I would think to myself — there’s a real opportunity here for fun and mischief!
Before leaving my apartment I would go out by the river bed, where there were tons of rocks that I had previously used for skipping across the water. Sharp, jagged and perfect for filling pockets — I would weigh myself down by an extra twenty or so pounds, in preparation of what I expected would be a rollicking good time.
It would happen sometimes after you stopped serving those hot dogs wrapped in fila dough.
With a wry grin on my face, and a handful of rocks, I would hurl them in all directions, watching as the glass house you had built came tumbling down in a cascade of terror — people running and hiding under (yes, you guessed it) glass tables and glass window treatments — which would just crumble as the walls crumbled around us.
The look on your face would be priceless.
I would explain, sometime in the aftermath, that you couldn’t possibly expect people to come to a housewarming for a totally 100% glass house without someone deciding to bring rocks. I would blame society and the phrase-makers of years gone by for the cause of such an instance. I would try to make you feel better by saying something like, “well at least you didn’t build a house out of peanut butter!”
It wouldn’t help, of course.
In the end, you’d go back to your job in the big city and I’d go back to my apartment with cuts on my face — and we’d live our lives separately for the rest of our days… You, at least feeling like you’d accomplished a lifelong goal (no matter the outcome) and me, pleased that I had finally made a famous saying come true.
You’d hate me, but that would be par for the course.