I need a word.
No, that’s quoting. I quickly shun myself.
Yes, that’s right! My teacher person practically jumps down my bad speller person’s throat in happiness. My sounder-outer from the most unfortunate state for that, Minnesota, lurks off once again. I applaud myself as if I’ve pottied in the right place for the first time, when all I have really done is remembered a word my brother learned in a high school German class.
I’ve been thinking about forbiddens lately, maybe because it’s the end of another grading season and heaven forbid anybody break another rule, miss another this, fail another that. We are all tired of No’s and we want more Yes’s. More “here are the keys/next patient, please.” You know the score.
I wish I could quit thinking of gardening that way, but I can’t.
The agony between efforts and results, investments and outcomes, came to a freak-flag head for me this morning when I watched the new landscape guy fix what the old handyman had fixed before, but this time the new landscape guy’s assistant—frustrated at not being able to reach a faucet—yanked out several very long leafy vines along with their roots, about one-fourth of an entire plant that I had been ignoring and under-nourishing but nevertheless keeping alive and watching for nearly a decade.
He just yanked it out. I saw him because I was leaned over to watch, ostensibly so that I could “learn”, but that’s what I tell all the handymen. If allowed one simile and one metaphor, I would say my eyes flew wide like saucers, and my mouth formed a question mark. Then I said, “Jesus frickin' Christ, do you not know a plant from a weed?” And I really strung out that E part.
I leaned back onto my heels from how I’d been bent over everybody, checked my anger, wheeled around and marched my huffy butt right back into the house, missy. I don’t let myself get away with too much for very long, at least that’s what I tell myself.
Luckily for me—and I mean that, because having anger control is a blessing—I was not long into my house when the thought struck me: In essence, all things considered, and everything being equal, and especially if I could admit my part in this (and I’m only talking about the plant they ripped out, not because they were here in the first place to fix a pipe because I hacked it open because I was hoeing too vigorously in the wrong place), I could not blame that man for mistaking what I considered to be a “plant” to be a “nuisance.” I reminded myself of all the plants that are considered nuisances in some states but exotic in others, kind of like the mesquite tree I bought a couple years ago that that some of my neighbors don’t like.
Somebody told me that about my first Brazilian Pepper too, but I didn’t believe it. I loved it so much that when it died, I bought another one.
I think it’s pretty.