Monday, May 11, 2009

Spring Interview With a Terrible Gardener

"When you have heard all my adventures, you will understand what trials and vicissitudes I have had to undergo to reach the felicity of this palace; you will realize that I have had to purchase the wealth which sustains my age with strange and terrible labors, with calamities, misfortunes and hardships that are scarcely credible."
The tale of Sinbad the Sailor, Ten Thousand Nights and One Night

Kent Brockman: So, TG, what are the most calamitous misfortunes and hardships associated with Springtime in Garden Blogville?

Terrible Gardener: Well, it would have to be the Spring garden blogging cliches I have to I have to endure. For example, the zoomed-in pictures of flowers, in artful pastels, some even with dew drops.

KB: And that upsets you why?

TG: When I grew up in suburban Washington DC, this is the time of year we’d head out to Haines Point, walk around the Jefferson Memorial where people were carefully framing their souvenir pictures of Cherry Blossom Time with the Jefferson Memorial in the background, reflecting basin in the middle, framed by overhead cherry blossoms reflected in the water. We’d stroll past, right into the picture frame, and whisper “Been done.” (Do a Google image search on “cherry blossoms, Jefferson Memorial” and you’ll get about a million lovely pics.) Besides, anybody can get flowers to bloom in Spring. That’s why god invented roses.

KB: I see. Trials and vicissitudes indeed. So, what's your number two Springtime blogging cliché?

TG: Next would have to be garden bloggers who talk about Spring Fever being the cure for Cabin Fever, or use metaphors more faded and worn out than a prostitute’s chenille bedspread. Like, the Great Circle of Life, renewal, rebirth, resurrection etc. That would include references to god’s (with a capital G) renewal of His promise to us that we are immortal. All’s I’m saying, Kent, is that Spring is equally likely to awaken bleak existential flashbacks and blunt reminders about how life has no meaning. Nobody blogs about the dark side of gardening in Spring, Kent. It’s garden bloggers’ dirty little secret, and it dominates my meditations as I soak in the spa at the end of a day gardening.

KB: Thanks for sharing your self-absorbed opinion of what constitutes hardship. Finally, what’s your number one beef about garden blogging in Spring?

TG: Simply that Spring makes me feel old, Kent. It makes me feel older each year, as I drag my creaking ass outside to overdose on the joy everywhere. If not for ibuprophen and the spa, I’d never recover from the pain that seems worse after each winter, or accept that my fingernails won’t get clean until next November. Spring’s the time of my annual realization that it doesn’t get any better than this. It really doesn’t – it gets worse.


Esther Montgomery said...


Wonderful post.

Best post I've read in ages.

Grumps of the World Unite!

Esther's Boring Garden Blog

Lucy Corrander said...

Only this morning I was wanting to explain why reflections introduce sentimentality - then I didn't. In part because it made a comment too long. And in part because many people like things to be sentimental.


chaiselongue said...

All very true ... and I say this as one who is guilty of some of the above! And, yes, it is another year too. My birthday's in spring so I'm reminded especially of this! The only thing worse than seeing another year go by is ... not seeing it go by!

Anonymous said...

Spring has always made me horny. Unfortunately the opportunities to do anything about that situation are growing woefully less frequent every year.

emmat said...

you have as ever made me laugh and laugh, and then start worrying about my own spring cliches