Earlier this week I beheld a bright flash of light in the northern skies just as night had fallen. I waited for the ground to rumble and sirens to wail, certain a nearby explosion was the cause (I had Beirut on my mind). But it was quiet. Eerily quiet.
The next morning, as is my custom, I went down to check on my tomatoes. To my horror, although I’d spent hours constructing a metal cage with bird netting around it, some vicious, horrible demon from hell (probably a gopher or a mole) had managed to stick a claw through all my handiwork and uproot the one and only tomato plant that was producing. He killed the plant, but he couldn’t pull its one struggling child through the wire. He got nothing and I got nothing. Tell me, Mr. Gopher. Was it worth it?
Then I noticed in the quiet part of the garden where my Yellow Rose of Texas blooms in the shadow of towering redwoods, a stalk, coiled as though ready to strike, rising at least two feet high and resembling, ah yes, an erect purple penis.
I ran upstairs and called out to Joel. He took his time, perhaps weary of my visions and fantasies, and then, upon finally examining the stalk, mused: “Perhaps it’s that bulb I planted years and years ago.”
“The one you paid fifteen dollars for?”
“I told you someday it would blossom.”
I’m guiltier than most of going to the nursery and coming home with all sorts of things I don’t really need but … fifteen dollars for a plant that might shoot up from the ground before your death and look like a giant erect purple penis? I suspect a really cute and bubbly salesgirl was involved in that purchase. What do you think?
Of course, Joel didn’t remember what the plant was called or even what it was supposed to look like and so I decided to get a second opinion from my friends:
“Maybe it’s one of those stinky plants that blooms once in a century,” Schip suggested. He was referring to the so-called Corpse Plant. One bloomed in San Francisco a few years back and it did indeed smell like a rotting corpse.
Luckily Joel, gullible though he is, would not allow some cutie pie to sell him a corpse plant. If he had, I would have gladly fed him to it.
Aaron, who’s a poetic soul, suggested some variety of orchid. I’m no expert but from what I’ve seen, orchids are dainty plants. This dude ain’t dainty. As I discovered the next morning.
Mary Alice was reminded of the giant rattlesnake I almost stepped on down in Sedona. It does look like snake about to strike doesn’t it? Everyone agreed I should leave it be and so I went inside to escape the heat and turned on the movie channel. “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” had just begun.
The message of this movie is clear. Since the 1970s, human beings have been systematically taken over by spores from an alien planet. First their bodies and then their minds until they have no free will. Apparently it took a while, but once enough Americans had been absorbed to tip an election, the aliens sent their supreme leader to render Planet Earth uninhabitable to human life. His human name is Donald Trump. Could the plant growing in my back yard contain alien spores?
I got my answer early Sunday morning.
For four hours I watched as the sky danced electric. The temperature in the house hovered in the 100s with 90% humidity and then, the rains began. Unfortunately they weren’t enough and now the state of California is on fire. We have a bag packed and next to the front door. But guess who’s digging the hellish scene? You got it … the Snake Plant!
The heat is starting to affect my computer and so, if lucky, I’ll post more pictures of my rapidly growing Snake Plant tomorrow. Perhaps someone out there will be able to identify it as native to this planet. Meanwhile, California is burning and dear friends are in danger. Please send rain.