I got invited to a yard work cookout on Sunday, yes a yard work cookout. I have been invited to Tupperware parties, Papered Chef events and even cheapo jewelry parties where you are expected to buy things from your friends, but never have I been invited over to perform manual labor in exchange for a hamburger. The only more absurd than the invitation itself is the fact that I accepted the invitation. Something momentarily must have appealed to me about being outside and working in a garden but now that the thought has had time to germinate, I realized how ridiculous it would be to go over to someone’s house and clean their yard when I have a long list of chores to do in my own home which includes my own yard work. I don’t mind offering a hand when it is needed but this isn’t an Amish barn raising it’s a spring clean up leaf raking. When did it become ok to invite people over because you needed something from them rather than for the pure enjoyment of their company? And what are the criteria for an invitation? Shear strength? Big wallets? Generous nature? I sent a follow up email now declining the invitation but extending an offer to allow him to come over and wash my kitchen floor in exchange for a ham sandwich.