When I was young I didn’t understand
When I was a small little Ohh of ten there was an odd old man that lived at the end of the block named Mr. Fenster. As he had the corner lot, and it was on the path to the elementary school, we were always cutting across his yard every morning and afternoon. All of us, that is except Mike Cooney. Mike was that kip that was always following the rules, and consequently making the rest of us look bad. Between him and the local tattle-tale Molly Samsa, my friends and I, were always in some sort of trouble or another. In other words, I had a totally normal childhood.
At that young age I always marveled at Mr. Fenster, because of how he obsessed over his lawn and garden. How could anyone in their right mind care so much about grass and a few shrubs. To us the man had to be certifiably insane. Especially in the autumn when his plum tree started to bear fruit. I mean there were seven billion plums on the thing and that one branch kinda sorta hung over the street. Okay it didn’t, but there were a lot of plums and so what if us kids took a few or a few hundred. Yea, I guess we over did that too. Funny, but it didn’t seem so bad at the time.
Now I’m older and still don’t
This is actually the point I’m trying to make here. Way back when I thought we did nothing wrong to sill old Mr. Fenster and he was just insane. Now, that I have a garden of my own, I understand just How rotten of a child I was. I actually screamed at a kid to get off my lawn the other day, and afterwards regretted it so much that I sent myself to my room. I felt so old! Of course, I don’t regret it enough to make amends or anything, but my attitudes have changed. Although, I still love plums enough to happen past certain trees at certain times of the year, but you never heard this from me.
Back then I didn’t understand the work and pride that goes into a garden. Frankly I still don’t understand why anyone does all that crap to make a few plants grow, but I do it. Every weekend I am out there with all of my friends and neighbors, swearing at weeds, praying for rain, and trying to figure out how those thornbushes I’m allergic to keep coming back.
My children try to help
My children aren’t any help. I found out I had some bugs and decided to spray. My son, screamed at me and told how bad it was. He suggested I buy some ladybugs, and they would take care of the problem without disturbing the environment. I did. Those little beetles ate all the offending bugs lickity-split. I was bug free for about a week then the ladybugs flew away and the bad bugs came back. I have now spent a hundred bucks on ladybugs and I still have something chomping my plants. And that’s not even the worst of it.
The worst part of having a garden is the same people who are telling me how to take care of it, My Family! I nursed a tea rose plant for three years and finally got it to bloom this year. I was so proud. I tried to show my buddy Frank the beautiful blooms and when he came over, they were gone. There was absolutely no color in my garden at all. Nothing but green. My wife and daughter decided that they were so pretty that they cut them all off and brought them in the house. I spend every freaking weekend outside trying to beautify the outside of my house, and the first thing that happens is the girls bring it inside. If I’d have wanted it inside, I’d have grown it inside. But No! My daughter keeps showing the rose in a vase on the shelf and telling me how lovely it looks in front of the window. Sadly, I’m not allowed to say that it looked better in front of the house, I get in trouble when I do. And they say women don’t rule the world. Just look at my colorless garden if you want to know.
But it always comes down to me
Another serious problem is my brand new 3-D printer. I thought I would have fun designing unique items, printing them out and maybe selling them online. I was wrong. The moment I got the thing working my son told me he needed a figurine for his Dungeons & Dragons group. I was happy to oblige. I mean one little thing isn’t so bad. Unfortunately, once the group saw what he had everyone wanted one. Now I might not have minded, if he would have tole me first and if he had asked them to pay for the supplies. However, neither of those things happened. He volunteered my services and also my generosity.
I don’t have any generosity. I’m a stingy old coot. I am also a coot who is making a bunch of figurines for his friends because his mother said I would when I objected. She beat me with logic. “What else was I going to be doing with the printer?” She asked. “Stuff” I said. “Well,” she continued, “if you don’t have any specific projects right now, you can do something for the kids.” She was right I didn’t. Silly me for thinking I could my stuff.
Then my daughter showed up. She was invited to a super hero party and needed a staff and a helmet. Once again it was dad to the rescue. Actually, this was fun. I started designing like a mad scientist. The staff had fourteen pieces in three different colors, I was a 3-D printing fool. My printer was working overtime with some pieces taking fours to complete. Then at last I was done I had all the pieces in one place and I was ready to assemble it. It was at this point I remembered I am not a ‘Do It Yourself’ kind of guy.
At first, I didn’t have the right kind of glue, and I made a huge sticky mess all over the kitchen table. After cleaning that up, I came back the next day with the correct stuff. The pieces finally stuck together. They also stuck to my hands, the walls, the door to the oven, and the dog. Wonder Dog always picks the wrong time to be affectionate, and usually we both live to regret it. On the plus side of things, the staff does have authentic fur from the great beast of Yanoth. On the minus side the pooch has a terrible haircut. So, I guess it all balances out.
Though sometimes I win
After gluing comes painting. This I actually managed pretty well. Most of the paint landed on the project or the newspaper I threw around the room. I managed to avoid painting the dog blue when he jumped up on my lap, but the cat thought it would be funny to attack my feet while I was walking to the sink to clean brushes. She is now arrayed in rainbow colors. The vet assures me they will wear off eventually.
I finally got back at that darn cat.
Thank you for laughing and Please read a little longer
Thank you all for laughing with me, but I need to be serious. Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency is a genetic disease which rots the liver and lungs. There is no cure. The only help for people is to have a weekly infusion of proteins to stop the spread. For the next few months I will be taking all my proceeds and donating them to the Alpha-1 Foundation who are searching for a cure to this horrible malady. You can give here or for more information go to Alpha-1.org Thanks for supporting world laughter, and finding a cure. Laugh On