Friday, January 17, 2014

150. The Magical Green Thumb

I have never in my life been able to keep plants alive. Year after year, wilted heartache after wilted heartache, I decided that enough innocent bonsais, spider plants and succulents had died on the sword of my hubris. I vowed never to buy another plant, convinced that I was cursed somehow. I tried very hard, but every plant I ever owned just loved to die.

This is the sort of thing that'll get to a girl after a while. 

But all that has changed. After the trail ended, I was gifted a few plants as housewarming gifts for the new apartment. I say "new apartment," as though we somehow would have been able to have plants at the "old apartment," i.e., our tent. Regardless, I accepted the plants with a mixture of gratitude and horror.

As soon as those plants were in my hands, I knew it was a countdown to the moment that they would slowly shrivel and dessicate like so many sunbathing vampires. I delicately placed the plants in the windows of my little New England apartment, and waited for their inevitable descent into Eleanor Rigby-type malaise.

But that's not what happened.

No, quite to the contrary, I have kept EIGHT PLANTS not only alive but thriving for months. One of them is even an ORCHID. These plants are totally rockin it in a freezing cold apartment that hardly ever gets above 55 degrees because we're trying to save the environment (read: save money) by abstaining from using the thermostat unless it gets well below freezing. NOT EVEN THIS HAS KILLED THE ORCHID. ISN'T THAT INSANE?! I AM SORRY FOR ALL THE CAPS LETTERS. AM I MAKING IT WORSE? I THINK I'M MAKING IT WORSE.

Before I go any further, I want to recognize that what I'm about to talk about teeters dangerously on the border of flimflam, hokum, balderdash and, well, bullshit territory. In accordance with this, I want to introduce you to the POPPYCOCK-O-METER. 

This is a helpful scaled meter, from 1 to 10, that I will use to rate my different theories on why I have suddenly obtained magical green thumb abilities. A rating of 1 means that it is only vaguely unlikely, whereas a rating of 10 indicates full-blown unabashed claptrap. 

For a meter, I will use my fingers which are, at this very moment, stained completely green. I was making homemade play-doh. It turned out exactly as it was supposed to, and not nearly as delicious as we always think it should be. Seriously, play-doh has no right to smell so salty-good and then taste so much like outdoor public pool water at the end of the summer.

Anyway, let's move on to:


Theory #1:

Maybe Clever Girl has just matured enough in both years and mind to actually water her plants at the appropriate times, and with the appropriate amount of water.

Poppycock-O-Meter Rating: 2. 
Because Clever Girl will never completely mature. Case in point: her hands are currently stained green from making homemade play-doh for no other reason than just feeling like it.

Theory #2:

Maybe Clever Girl just happened to be gifted plants that are easier to take care of than the plants she's had before

Poppycock-O-Meter Rating: 6

This is ridiculous. Say what you want, there were no easy plants for Clever Girl, and she tried SO MANY DIFFERENT KINDS. There were just plants that died, plants that took a little longer to die, and wax plants bought from arts n' crafts stores.

Theory #3:

Clever Girl was blessed by a magical Appalachain Trail forest fairy and given nature powers.

Poppycock-O-Meter Rating: 10
This is absurd. Magical forest fairies do not grant special powers. They bite.

Theory #4:

Somehow, throughout her time and months existing fully in the natural world as a long-distance hiker, Clever Girl's energy was shifted slightly toward a subtle understanding of plantlife. Perhaps she learned to be aware of the tiny, previously imperceptible way that plants communicate and give off their own energy. Perhaps the quietness of the woods brings with it a long-term gift for hearing the voices in the silence of the woods; for hearing the inaudible spectrum changes in the language of plants.

Poppycock-O-Meter Rating: ????
Well that was a steaming crock of...

Clever Girl

In case you're wondering, I think it's Theory #4. Sometimes things happen that we don't understand, but that make the world just a little more magical, and I think that's okay.

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