I’ve never been a trendsetter. No one looks to me for the next fashion statement or hairstyle. (Although, with all the flannel I wear, I seem to have anticipated the “Lumber Sexual” movement. Minus the beard and ax.) I’ve also never considered myself to be a trend follower. I’d definitely come in last place in any “Name the Kardashian” game, and I don’t buy clothes based on appearance, but rather on three strict criteria: they must be cheap, comfortable, and not need ironing. But there’s one thing I started doing way before it became popular.
I’ve got goats.
You see goats everywhere now. Jumping around Facebook wearing pajamas, cavorting on television ads, and yelling on YouTube. Twelve years ago, when I first got a sweet little goat named Domino to keep my horse company, I didn’t realize I would eventually be part of a worldwide craze comparable to the invention of parachute pants or the Jennifer Aniston haircut. Yes, it finally happened—I’m part of a trend. And although I spend more time cleaning the shed and buying hay than you usually see in goat videos, I also get to experience the joy and laughter these wonderful creatures bring to life as they butt heads and jump on spools.
I’ve also shared a hotel room with two of them as we traveled from Washington to Texas, but that’s another story… (you can read it at http://kariswalsh.com/2014/01/27/traveling-cross-country-with-goats )
In my newest novel, Love on Tap, Tace Lomond is as non-trendy as I am. She lives a quiet life in her own small corner of the world, limited both by life’s circumstances and by her own doubts and fears. Her new tenant, archaeologist Berit Katsaros, is the opposite—she’s all the rage in the small college town of Walla Walla, Washington. On the surface, one woman is world-traveled and hip, while the other feels that she’s provincial and boring. As the story progresses though, they manage to see beyond trends or lack thereof. They see beyond the details to the substance and value underneath.
I’m not sure what to do with my newfound sense of trendiness, my close brush with a pop culture fad. I’ll have to decide later. Right now, I need to fill my pockets with dried figs and pretzels and go visit the goats. Trends come and go, but goats are always hungry.