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A preview of my “Yet to be titled” garden memoir

The following is an excerpt from a yet to be published (or fully written for that matter) memoir about the role gardening and plants play in my every day life. Everything you are about to read is true and really went down as it is conveyed. I can’t promise you it will be interesting, but we will keeps it real.  

January 12th, 2014 (Sunday) -

You know how the sound of rain hitting the roof warms the soul in spring and summer for us gardeners? Well that sound had me friggin livid when I woke up this morning. As I took the dog out at the crack of dawn (a 14 year old bladder will do that) my backyard looked like the Bayou with all of this rain … and not in a cool, creepy and Gothic way. Just plain wet and nasty.
  

I’m fairly certain I saw perennials (planted months before) floating down newly created streams and tributaries after finally heaving themselves out of the ground with all of these extreme temperature changes. Damn I hate January and February here in the Northeast. I can deal with snow cover and some cold temps but this wet and mild weather one day followed by single digits the next day, really shits the bed. Wake me up when the first crocus bulbs emerge in March.

Of course there is more to life than my garden so it was time to put my big boy pants on and enjoy the weekend morning with my wonderful family. The coffee was made and all four of us were on our electronic devices, not communicating with each other. Family bonding of the best kind. I reviewed last night’s hockey scores, scanned my emails to see if Fine Gardening wants me to write a column for them (spoiler alert – nothing of the sort) and laughed heartily at all the wonderfully silly cat pics on Facebook (hope the sarcasm was obvious here). Fantastic use of my time as the coffee ran through my veins.

I fancy myself a garden designer and I have a hard time caring enough about my spring garden planning quite yet. So in order to fulfill that desire, I’ve taken a bit to interior design. Yeah you heard me, interior design. My wife and I have been slowly piecing together our living room (formerly an indoor basketball room) and while I can’t do a thing like hang a door or put up moldings, I have strong opinions when it comes to color and texture and furniture placement. And that all comes from the garden design experience.

While hopped up on caffeine, we reviewed my wife’s stellar Pinterest boards to narrow down our search for wall sconces, chairs and book shelves. THIS is why Pinterest was invented and why my wife could be a spokesperson for them. Actually, she could be a professional pinner. I wonder if that exists? Does it pay well? Note to self: encourage wife to be a pro pinner. Anyways, Pinterest is as simple as see something you like, “pin” it and move on. Once your “board” is filled, simply review the choices and make a decision. Wait, this is my memoir so why am I explaining Pinterest? I need to work these kinks out if I ever want to publish this memoir. Tangent complete.           

So off we headed to the furniture store in search of a chair to work with our couch and other already purchased furniture. Three long hours later we had our chair purchased. We laid out twenty five fabrics samples against each other to find the perfect one and I was way the hell into it.

“This brown truly has hints of green and we don’t want to do that.”

“That pattern won’t work next to the other patterned chair.”

“If we want to get a leather ottoman, this fabric will contrast beautifully.”

Those exact words came out of the mouth of yours truly. It made me long for the days of grabbing plants at the nursery and grouping them together until the combo just popped. This wasn’t the same, but it still got the design juices flowing. You want to know how much it meant to me? I blew off the NFL playoff games.

            

                            

3 thoughts on “A preview of my “Yet to be titled” garden memoir”

  1. Oh John!! If you do write a memoir, you should write it in just this style. It is hilarious and interesting at the same time. I can’t stand books that just list “and today I did this and then I did that and then I did it again……” much nicer to have some fun and jollity and real actual LIFE in there!! Hope that the plants haven’t floated off down the bayou by the way!

  2. Greetings from North Carolina. Please don’t edit your memoir; your “voice” is genuine and just a hoot to read. I hear ya on the rain. We had the polar vortex, followed by 50+ degree temps, and then torrential rains that within hours swept away a small bridge that was over a secondary creek bed that is normally dry. The 4×4 bridge ended up half a mile away in one of our neighbors’ backyard. Your choosing home design over the NFL playoffs is admirable but I can understand the need to have a creative outlet in one way or form. Good luck with the plants and the decore choices.

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