THE SONIC BOOMER
Remember last month when I told you that I was going on vacation and leaving my garden in a “survival of the fittest” situation? Evidently, it took me at my word. And, just in case you had any doubt, weeds are way more fit than vegetables.
I was only gone 10 days but, when I returned, the weeds were lush, willowy and four inches tall. There were numerous varieties, each one greener than the last. Their roots were firm and entwined. Their stalks were strong and supple. Their leaves were as big as paper plates with nary a bug bite to besmirch their beauty.
I grabbed a machete and finally located my three tomato plants. They were weak, sickly and clinging to each other for moral support. Their roots were exposed and brown. Their stalks were limp and porous. Their leaves drooped dejectedly and looked as if the tiniest breeze would blow them away — if it could only get through to them.
A baby bunny, surprised at my arrival, looked up fearfully and learned to hop for the first time, a skill necessary to make the leap that would free him from my voluptuously overgrown garden.
I sent a photo of “Birnam Wood” to my daughter who, impressed by the height of things, asked me if there were any sunflowers. “How the heck should I know?” I replied. “I can’t even see the sun from in here.”
Still, I desperately wanted to have somehow nurtured a tomato. I rooted around amongst the many, many leaves and lo and behold, I discovered a small, round, yellow tomato. I was disappointed, until I remembered that the person who sold me the plants told me they would be yellow, not red. So I was happy — excited, even. Here on my very own “farm” in my very own backyard, I had brought a tomato into the world. I plucked it from its spindly-legged home, hacked my way out of the garden and took it inside.
Full of pride, I washed it and placed it on a miniature pedestal to photograph for my Facebook page, small retaliation for the numerous photos of agricultural bounty I’ve been having to view on other people’s Facebook pages. Surely viewers would think it was just one tomato of many bushels of tomatoes.
That’s when tragedy struck. My wee little tomato rolled off its pedestal onto the counter where it turned its back to me. And there, I am not lying, was the unmistakable imprint of a black frowny face on its round yellow head.
It may as well have screamed at me, “You tried! You failed! Now leave us alone!”
And you know what? My scarred little tomato was right.
I had turned the ground once, raked once, thrown water down once and gone off to greener pastures on vacation. I don’t deserve a tomato.
What’s more — I don’t deserve a garden. But let’s take a vote.
Uh-huh. I thought so.
The weeds feel I did a marvelous job.