There are so many things I just don’t want in my life any more, such as outraged celebrities and millionaire sports figures telling me how put-upon they are and how evil the rest of us are because we don’t see that we are privileged and they are not.

Um. No. Just . . . no.

As much as I struggle learning to garden and take care of a yard, it’s so much . . . cleaner . . . than what’s out there in the rest of the world. No one has ever become so outraged they burned down a city because someone killed a plant. No plant association has ever intimidated people to join political organizations with public agendas that are actually different than the ones they privately espouse. (Well, that’s not exactly true. Although many supposedly earth friendly organizations don’t come after potential members with firepower, they do tend to blackmail folks, telling them if they don’t join, the world’s trees will all die, the bees will all die, and ultimately, we will all die. But at least they do this via mail rather than sticking a fist in our faces or burning down our neighborhoods.)

My property feels like a haven from the insanities of the world, and maybe someday it will even look that way. I’d ordered some live plants that came in today, hoping I will have better luck with them than I did with bulbs and such. These plants are vines that will, ideally, twine up my as yet unfinished gazebo. Unlike with bare root plants, I don’t have to scurry to plant these poor wilted things. It’s okay to leave them in the shade for a few days to let them get acclimated to the area and to recover from their traumatic trip. (The box they came in was smashed up, so much so that I’m surprised it got here at all.)

I have the plants sitting next to my seedling forest for the next few days, hoping all the plants will enjoy one another’s company. (A couple of the Kentucky coffeetree seedlings are having second thoughts about the move and seem to want to fade away.)

My luck with live plants is so-so. Some die, like almost all those I bought last year. Some live, but don’t grow. (Although they were bare root plants rather than in pots, four of the five lilacs I planted are alive but haven’t grown even a fraction of an inch all summer.) Some do well, such as the hen and chick succulents I ordered a couple of months ago.

(Oddly, the free one they sent in case one of those I paid for didn’t do well, is thriving. The others are doing okay so far.)

I still haven’t ordered any Greengage plum trees, but there’s no hurry since they wouldn’t be sent for another few months. (The house where Jeff and I lived had a grove of Greengages, and oh, they were the absolutely best-tasting fruit ever, the sort of things the gods would save for themselves.)

I’m never sure how many of any plant to order. If I order two trees, and one doesn’t grow, then I’m out of luck for another year. If I get three and all three grow, then I would have to remove one, which wouldn’t please me at all. (I should be so lucky to have that problem!)

Problems such as these seem so innocent, considering what is going on in other parts of the country. Although I might not be able to fix gardening problems, at least I can understand them, which is more than I can say for the problems that light up the news. Though even those are understandable to a certain extent. People seem to be addicted to outrage, and the more outrage there is, the more outrage there will be since outrage seems to feed upon itself.

It’s . . . outrageous.


Pat Bertram is the author of Grief: The Inside Story – A Guide to Surviving the Loss of a Loved One. “Grief: The Inside Story is perfect and that is not hyperbole! It is exactly what folk who are grieving need to read.” –Leesa Healy, RN, GDAS GDAT, Emotional/Mental Health Therapist & Educator

5 Responses to “Outrageous”

  1. Judy Galyon Says:

    Very pretty plants. I agree with you about enjoying your little piece of heaven. I feel the same way.

  2. Estragon Says:

    Some years ago, I planted a pair of maple trees. They were both the same size, from the same nursery, planted about 20 feet apart. Method of planting, fertilizer, watering, pest control, etc., all the same. Still, one thrived – now maybe 50 feet tall, leafy, and apparently happy as Larry. The other struggled, withered, suffered, and eventually I had to take it down before it came down in a storm. Why, I dunno. Were there genetic differences in the two trees that caused the stark difference in their lives? Was there something very local in the soil or some other local environmental factor? Did one see the other as a competitor and throttle the weaker one? I have no idea. Maybe just random chance?

    It seems to me ideas can be like that. Some seem to take root, irrespective of their merits, at least for a time. Why do some take root, while others wither? I dunno. Maybe some happen to hit on a particularly fertile bit of ground, and thrive, at least until the roots reach less fertile ground. Randomness. Hmmm.

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      Maybe I should adapt “randomness” as a philosophy. It’s certainly easier than always trying to figure out the reasons things happen. Having reasons seems to indicate a measure of control over life, though that seems to be mostly illusion.

      At least I won’t be too hard on myself when/if plants seem to randomly die.

  3. Sam Sattler Says:

    Nice plants and photos, Pat. I can see how much you get out of gardening despite it still being somewhat of a learning process for you.

    My outrage of the week is the way that professional basketball and baseball teams are going on mini-strikes in protest of what they perceive to be racial injustice. I’m not saying that what they are protesting did or did not happen the way they perceive it. What irks me is that I see professional sports competition as an escape from the real world that I so desperately want a break from in the evenings. Now, I can’t look to sports to provide that for me. The seasons are already going to be very short – and probably meaningless in sports history – and these idiots want to throw some of the games into the toilet. They say they may come back in a few days and be ready to play again. In my personal outrage, I have to say that I won’t be ready to come back and watch them nearly that quickly – if ever again.

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      Those are the very folks who inspired this blog. Everything, absolutely everything is seen through the lens of race nowadays, which skews everything. These folks are gifted, privileged in a way that most people will never even get a taste of, and they know this, because that very value is what they are counting on. They think that their star is eternal, and no matter what they do, their fans will forgive. It seems they are killing their golden goose, not just for them, but those who will try to come after.

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