Stop what you’re doing and read this Pioneer Woman post first. After you’ve read that blogging marvel and been properly introduced to Ree Drummond and her ranch, you can continue reading my supremely sub-par post below.
It should be obvious to you why Ree had better watch her back (I could swoop in in a minute and drive a truck around with her basset hounds and cows – and throw Husband into a pair of chaps, to boot) after reading that. Do yourself a favor and check out every part of her website – she renovates historic main street buildings, cooks up something fierce, and runs a cooking show. There’s something for everyone!
It should also be obvious to you why I went to her book signing this week. …No, you’re wrong. I didn’t go to see Ree. I went to get my friend’s cooking books signed because she couldn’t go herself.
Ree is well-known for being shy, awkward, and generally ill at ease in front of crowds or cameras. So, it was fitting when she said a very few words to welcome the crowd to the signing. So few words, in fact, that I didn’t even get a good photo of her. She told us Hello, Welcome, Thanks for coming, I really REALLY can’t believe anyone came because it is Thanksgiving week, and if I keep talking for any longer my hands will start to shake, Thanks. Then she commenced the book signing. As a fun treat, Ree’s daughters came with her. They both look just like her, are both taller than me, and took the opportunity to slip through the crowd, so we all figured they had somewhere cooler to be than to hang out with their super cool mom. Turns out, we were right. They came back about an hour later with TJ Maxx bags! You have to shop while the shopping is good, apparently (as it may not be in Oklahoma).
I’d never been to a book signing before, and I had honestly never really even considered it. I assumed there would be long lines and lots of standing around. And I was right. It was a zoo. Miraculously, we were assigned Line Letter G. This is way better than having H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P, Q, R, S, T, U, V, W, X, Y, or Z. And it was way better than it was for those fools who came and didn’t even have tickets.
Waiting for those with VIP, A, B, C, D, E, and F tickets get finished getting their books signed and apparently telling Ree their entire life stories (how could it have taken 2.5 hours to get to letter G?), we had time to hang out in Joseph Beth. Their employees who worked this event were amazing – they were super organized and in unbelievably good moods. This is astounding to me because their jobs were to herd nearly 800 Pioneer Woman wannabees into lines all night. Yikes. Also, we got to enjoy the festive decorations and enjoy the smells of Bronte’s adaptations of Pioneer Woman recipes.
After all that waiting (I’ll spare you the other gory details), and all this reading, here is what you really came to see ^
Me, looking like a nutcase, crouching next to Ree Drummond. Husband and I walked up there, snapped a photo, and chatted as you would expect. I told her thanks for coming – doesn’t she have a lot of cooking to be doing? Then I told her our next stop was dinner (Husband chimed in that he only came because he was promised dinner. Right.) She asked where we were going. PF Chang’s, I told her. At this point, I think I lost her because either 1. she was heartbroken a fan of her’s would eat at a chain restaurant, or 2. she was super jealous of us because she had been signing books for almost three hours and had at least four more hours to go and was starving. I shrugged off this awkward exchange and offered up that she and her girls should definitely grab some Yagööt if they needed a snack afterwards. Then we left.
Our mission was accomplished and I got not one, but two books signed for mi amiga. I’m astounded that Ree not only signed all those books, but she did so with two extra hearts on each one! While smiling! Holy hand cramp. So, as I told Ree, we left the book store and made a beeline for PF Chang’s where I had a well-deserved beer. About halfway through my beer I remember the worst thing that could have happened – I forgot to ask Ree how my namesake calf, Abigail, was doing! Sigh. I guess there’s always the next book signing.