Sunday, August 30, 2009

This & That

God killed my patio garden. Though I'm sure, as usual, god can't take all the blame. I left the garden to go to Squaw and when I came back, it wasn't the same. The garden was well cared for by my neighbor Molly, but this didn't relieve the abandonment issues the garden was apparently harboring. All the leaves turned a celery-yellow, and all the snap peas came in while I was gone -- cheap shot, Garden. When I left, zucchini were budding, about three good-sized ones. I was excited to harvest them when I got back, but all evidence of them had been erased when I raced to the garden to check their progress.
I asked Molly how the zucchini were thinking she had plucked them off the vine and enjoyed them, and she said, "What zucchini?"
I said, "The zucchini disappeared?"
She said, "What zucchini?"
I shrugged and said, "See? I know absolutely nothing about gardening."

It might have been Mina's tutor who dog-kitty-house sat for a couple days, but she has since flown to Paris on an exchange program and it seems silly to ask her about three zucchini gone missing when she's all Eiffel Tower and Champs-Élysées and shit. I don't need to embarrass myself to that extent. It really is about making sure I'm not completely hallucinatory and/or a completely incompetent gardener. I may never know. Secretly, I think god killed the patio garden so I'd stop fucking around and write the novel already.

Just like god gave my bike a flat tire and gave me an intolerance to baked goods. Well played, god! I'm on it.

The tomatoes survived the trauma of my absence and they are fantastic. Thank you tomatoes. And the bell peppers were kind enough to stick around. It looks like I have some pole beans and cucumbers still coming, but the supporting plant, the leaves and stalk and such, look so sickly I'm not sure what the outcome will be. I stare at the garden like it's a mystery, like what will unfold has nothing to do with me.

* * *
I bought this Ecco Bella Lotion in Vanilla. I stole the idea from Lisa because she had it at Squaw and she was kind enough to let me get a squirt. She called it her pastry lotion because that's what it smells like, sweet, flaky pastry. Uh, it's intoxicating. I told Lisa that I was going to steal her scent. After I slathered it on at home, I asked Mina, "Don't I smell like a glazed donut?" And she said, "No, you smell like PlayDoh." Motherfu--- what does she know about smelling like pastry! I do think Mina meant it as a compliment and her comments have not kept me from smearing myself twice a day with the stuff.

* * *
LA's burning down. It's scary. Every year we know we're going to get fires in California and we only pray that the damage will be at a minimum and that they won't last long. But the heat is not helping. They are burning in every direction. Yesterday I told Husband it feels as if California is on the constant verge of catastrophe. Like when we rode our bikes on a stretch of bike path that goes under the pier yesterday; when we were directly under the gigantic wood pier, it creaked from cars and pedestrians above. I looked at the support columns and thought, if an earthquake hits now, forget it. My husband looked at me -- we were in the pier's shadows -- and I know he was thinking the exact same thing.

We rode down to the beach as monstrous smoke clouds billowed behind on the horizon near the mountains. We parked ourselves on the sand and I marveled at the waves which were as reflective as glass; I haven't seen that in a long time. It was such a contrast to the smokey skies and the ash rain, how the waves of the ocean were extra clear, shiny and perfect. It was perfectly LA, where everything feels at conflict; paradise on the brink of disaster. So, I was on the sand thinking of fires and earthquakes, when I see fifty yards from the shore three dolphins threading in and out of the water just beyond the small break. Mina was in the water, closer to them, and she yelled to us to look. Her body was silhouetted against the glass water and fins cut up, just above her head in my line of view. More dolphins looped passed, about ten in all, and then they turned around and came back. They lapped back and forth for a half hour. I didn't take my eyes off of them once. I watched them the entire time.

Wish us well, sibling states.


Rozmin said...

I'm so jealous you have tomatoes! We had 5. Then there was a huge storm, and one of the pots fell down 4 stories. Now there is 1 tomato. And it is the ONLY thing that looks alive in our garden. No idea what we did wrong. I always thought that water+dirt+sun=plants not dying.

Maybe some raccoon or something got your zucchini? Probably they were too big for birds to get at.

nec said...

I'm glad that you are reaping at least partial benifits from your patio garden - and next year I hear is going to be a great year for zucchini! :o)

Being in Az we have our share of fires - but nothing like what your area is dealing with... This heat has GOT to let up soon. We just completed another weekend >110

Sending good thoughts and cooling rains your way!

Marigoldie said...

I've got tomatoes and zucchini but no dolphins.

It's exhilarating to live somewhere beautiful and on the brink. That's how I felt about New Orleans. Fragility can feel deliciously ominous, but maybe that's just for certain personality types? That's not to say I'm not wishing you safety and peace and yes, cool rain.

The first time I ever saw a dolphin, I cried.

madness rivera said...

Thanks Nec, and yes, Roz, I have no clue. But it's still fun and miraculous ain't it?

A - I agree about the brink thing and usually I try not to think about it much because I overload myself with worry; about the suffering thing. That eats at me too much; that people do and will suffer because of the constant brink. People trapped in the fire, firefighters killed, the momumental loss of land and memories and Home, starting all over, the hundreds of pets displaced or now in the pound. It's so much. And today it still rages. The front page of the LA Times reads: Little Sign of Slowing. They said the fires have created their own atmosphere and outside it looks like doomsday. I dunno. Tough to take paradise on days like these.

Michelle said...

Stay safe, lady.

Can I just say your latest posts are slaying me? The last one was so potent I couldn't even bring myself to open the comment box, although I came back to reread like five times.

I for one love the smell of a freshly cracked open can of Play Doh. Have you ever seen that Play Doh-scented perfume in Whole Foods? They have scents like dirt and grass, too. Maybe it's just an Alabama thang.

madness rivera said...

Thanks so much Michelle.

I wanna smell like grass.

Don't Get Mad Get Vegan! said...

i thought i wanted to smell like Dirt until I bought that one.

on me Dirt apparently doesn't smell like Dirt at all.

most people in the sunshine state love fall. me? i love summer. sure i like it hot...but mostly? no hurricanes!

safety and love to you and yours.

madness rivera said...

What does Dirt smell like on you? Don't tell me PlayDoh. And safety to you this coming fall.

Rebel Girl said...


Madame One Tree said...

Play DOH smells sexy.

Hoping that things are better in the environment for you.

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