The Fifty Cent Tour

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Gardening with David Sedaris

I have been an abusive daughter.
I have treated my mother just terribly. 
I don't give her anything to drink or eat, I don't give a shit if she's crawling with infestation or even clean.

And I couldn't care less.
Her caretaking actually fills me with ennui.

It should be pointed out, that before you dial social services, I am talking about Mother Earth. 

And since I don't normally walk around saying Mother Earth, lest I get the "Oh God 360" eye roll... today, in this post, I am calling my yard, Mother.

Ya dig ?

Fortunately for Mother, a few sweet words from a friend have inspired me to spend some quality time with her.

Plus, my neighbors are all beginning to think I'm an asshole.
They're a little slow in that regard.

And despite all my big talk a moment ago, I really have been feeling twinges of guilt about the state I have let my mother fall into.
Her hair is uncombed and full of pests. Her skin is dry and cracked.
She is an abomination.

"Daughter, why have you forsaken me?"
If lawns could talk they probably would say something biblical.
And maybe sound a lot like Samuel L. Jackson.

So today, after work, instead of the normal e-mail, homework, school crap routine I have fallen into...It was time to spend an afternoon with Mother.

She was repellent at first sight. 
Where do I even begin?
What are weeds?
What are flowers?
What are poison?


I was ready to pack it in until I recalled my friend's words
"C'mon Rene, a pinch here, a wiggle there"
Sounds hot doesn't it?
Like porn.
Lawn porn.

I would like to tell you that I had an epiphany, that suddenly Mother Earth's prodigal daughter had returned.
I would love to inform you all that I have found my life's calling and that from now on in my pages will be filled with the most spectacular peonies and buds you have ever cast your gaze upon...
I would dearly love to treat you to a header photo of me, elbows deep in the good earth wistfully blowing a tendril of hair out of my eye
or maybe one of me wearing a little chiffon number and lime green garden gloves...ahh

but the truth is...
it was insanely boring.
And since my daughter a.k.a She Of Little Help And Much Whining was indifferent to my mid lawn crisis, I had to go it alone.

It wasn't long before I was asking myself, there has got to be an easier, faster way of doing this.

Were there some landscapers working nearby that could be bribed?
No, no...there was no easy way outta doing this, other than just gettin' down and dirty
and doin' it.
I'm talking about the weeding.

So I resorted to the old, "If I could be weeding with anyone living or dead"... I automatically ruled out the dead because what help would they be? Besides fertilizer.
And the smell...

So, I decided that David Sedaris would be the perfect weeding companion.

He would entertain me with his dry humour and endless stories of being a fish out of water at, I don't know...
the bordello, rodeo, numismatic meeting, lint inspector conference, weeding a garden...

He would point out that garden tools sound rather Dickensian:
The Rake
The Hoe
The Lopper
The Shredder
The Secateurs ( beware the Secateurs). 

We would whittle the afternoon away being incredibly witty and oh so very critical of the other neighbours perfectly groomed yards.
We would consider that freakish and attribute that level of perfection to some kind of failing elsewhere in their lives.

Ahhh me...and this is how I passed and hour and a half without feeling like I passed a kidney stone. I can't believe some people actually choose to do this as a form of escape.

I don't worry about them...but I do wonder about them.
As they would about me.

~As I am so very ready for the warmer weather I thought I would coax it along by posting something Spring-y from my archives. ~ Rene


  1. Can you carve out a small area...say, 4'x6', put a border around it and call it yours? Plant a few vegetables that you can enjoy and not feel overwhelmed by an entire span of earth? It's less weeding and far more gratifying.

  2. oh this was a hoot...sedaris would be great to weed with...and mother i am sure is a little better...maybe...great writing rene...

  3. If my yard sounded like Samuel Jackson, I'd probably be scared to go outside. "Yo, b**ch, get down here and weed me!"

    Weed me. hah. Like Brian said "to weed with"...we said 'weed' hehheh :)

  4. And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who attempt to poison and destroy my brothers.  And you will know my name is the Lord when I lay my vengeance upon thee. - Yeah, well our mother lawn has similar feeling about us for certain.



  5. Yes, well I used to often wonder what part of gardening was it I liked. It certainly wasn't the maintenance but I did enjoy digging a hole, sticking the shrub in the back filling with dirt mixed with peat moss for the clay soil here. I think it was the smell of th edirt I loved so. but after that? taking care of everything? Oh no. that was so boring. :) I can only hope you will, REne, learn to grow up into a more responsible daughter, you nelgigent one1 :)

  6. Get this. I caught a honey bee on Sunday here in Topeka. We topped sixty degrees. I'll bet he didn't make it through the night though. Mother can be a cruel old bat.


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