Tuesday, May 12, 2009

My dog doesn't use gloves

I am not a fan of gloves. Granted I do live in snake/spider country and a terrible nail biter, but I cannot stand wearing gloves when I garden unless it's for something particularly gross.

Digging holes? Gloveless! Poking holes in the ground for seeds! No extra skin on these digits. Spiky thorny weeds? Yep, no gloves there too, (just grab really low at the base of the weed and there are no spikes there). Spreading bags of wet grass clippings taken from the neighbors yard? YES, I will wear gloves then. (Dude, dogs do their business there.)

Perhaps I should be nervous about the potential for black widows and brown recluses and the like. I try to remind myself of their potential bitey nastiness by looking at terrible infection laden pictures of people's limbs which were bitten, but still, I find myself chucking the gloves off sooner or later because I like to feel my dirt. I just feel so awkward in gloves, partially because my hands tend to be too tiny for most gloves around that my hands are overblown and awkwardly clown-like when I do wear them. When I talk about feeling my dirt, I mean I like to dig deep into the soil and be able to note the density and moisture content it holds. Easily pluck out grubs from earthwarms and pull the tiniest weed out with ease.

True, my hands are almost ever pervasive with specks of dirt here and there, my nails would make a manicurist cringe (Did I mentioned that I bite them too? "Ewwwww," I can hear it already from here). When I am really digging around and having to wash up a lot my hands seem to be more related to fish than humans with all the dried up scaley skin I have flaking off. Oddly enough though, my hands recover quickly, being used to such abuse and rarely do I ever find myself in enough dermal pain that I have to slather on the lotion.

Lotion! Speaking of which, if I wore gloves all the time they would make me feel so Hannibal Lector/Buffalo Bill-esque. (Sorry, twisted I know.)

(I know that there are non-leather work gloves out there, but I find those to even weirder to me, it would be so... hygienic. I'm working with dirt here, not a patient!)


So I have a lot of plants. Sometimes they get the best of me and sit out for days, ok, maybe weeks in their original containers until I decide I know where best to put them. Usually I leave them in the front yard by the walkway where they can get the most sun and I've never had a problem. I had been so busy and recently have been feeling ill and on top of it had an ill feeling that something was wrong/missing. The realization came to me like a bullet last night before I went to bed that my Haight-Ashby Hisbiscus was missing.

I couldn't sleep as it had been given to me as a gift and in my bathrobe I went out with a flashlight searching for it. No, no, no, not there, not there, not there. I checked again in the morning and came to the conclusion that unless the plant evolved and walked off with its newly gained legs, that plant was truly stolen.

Why couldn't the thief walk off with the dollar clearance item lily or columbine I had left out? Why not the viburnum? (probably because it was too large).

Haight-Ashbury is definitely an attractive, eye catching plant with bright pink and interestingly shaped foliage. I am not usually into annuals, non-edibles--- that are pink especially, but at the greenhouse I had mentioned this to a friend as it caught my eye with its spiky roselles and small beautiful dark burgundy flowers. Its name made me laugh and it was so fitting to be a "hippie" like flower. I had walked away from it because I didn't have more money to burn, but my friend surprised me with it as a gift.

While I am upset about the loss of this plant it perturbs me that someone has stolen from me, on my property, and just the simple meanness of it. They CHOSE to steal this one plant from me and it makes me paranoid and angry all at once. I am trying to dispel these feelings, but sometimes, humanity..... It is just a plant I know, but as with everything in my life, I see the fact and act that it was taken as just another representative of "bad things" about people to depress me about. Shake it off, shake it off.

Walking with my husband today morning, in mourning, I thought to myself, well, if anyone stole it to give it to their mom for Mother's Day recently at least someone's mother would be happy with such an interesting plant.

She damn well better treat it right.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Duck tales, woohooo!

It is not known how long the struggle has gone on, but the saga of the brown ducks, white ducks and geese in the park is epic and so bizarrely parable-esque, you might think that I am reading WAY too deeply into nature and its designs or that I am just loony.

When my husband and I first moved here, there was a small population of brown ducks and larger number of white ducks. The white ducks would always harass the brown ducks, chasing them to no end around the pond until they drove the brown ducks out of the water onto the land or til the brown ducks flew off. The only reason I could imagine the white ducks being so territorial was because that was just their nature, or it was a food issue.

After a while, due to unknown reason, but quite possibly due to human intervention involving lots of bread and/or corn being fed to them/we suspect that all the white ducks are male, the brown ducks started making babies. LOTS of the babies, until the brown ducks out numbered the white ducks about 8:1.

The white ducks were getting pretty antsy about this now and couldn't harass the brown ducks too easily there were simply too many of them, not like the brown ducks ever countered back at the white ducks anyway (maybe there was a Gandhi duck).

At some point, it was rumored that one of the white ducks got hit in the head by a rock thrown from a mean spirited kid and went a little "weird" and began to get harassed by the white ducks. Out of fear, the injured white duck began hanging with the brown ones (I'd like to repeat, that I am not making this story up). The white duck specifically would swim with a brown male and female pair and actually took it upon itself to defend the pair when the white ducks got uppity with the brown ducks.

Lately I haven't seen the trio, and most of the brown ducks have flown since winter, but now a flock of big ol' Canadian geese have come to the lake and are acting pretty tough towards the white ducks.

All I've been able to hear in my head when I see the 2 groups square off is the "Jet's Song" from West Side Story.

I also have been thinking that I ought to take this tale mainstream and write a children's storybook.