I don’t get it

Greetings and salutations, everyone; yes, once again it is I, Chess the purebred border collie, filling in for the guy I live with, who is busy planting. You may remember me from such delightful posts as “Something Completely Different” and “A Man, A Plan, A Gazoon”, among others.

Here I am in an atypical pose, showing off my handsome profile.


Today we had to get up really early so that the guy I live with could leave me at home alone and go to a plant sale. He blamed me for not getting up early enough yesterday, and so he had to set the alarm clock last night. He claims that if the fan is blowing in air that’s cool enough, I’ll lie in bed until I feel like getting up, which sometimes isn’t very early at all. Of course it’s his fault that when he bought new sheets (because the old ones were so old they ripped) he got really soft sheets from Pottery Barn even though they weren’t the most expensive, and so I like to lie on them with the fans blowing cool air up my nose for as long as possible. This is déjà vu all over again, like Yoga Berra said. Well, at least if you have the same discussion over and over again, you don’t have to think up anything new to say.

Anyway, he set the alarm, and we got up early, and I got to chase a smelly cat out of the garden first thing. I may be 11 but I can still chase cats.

We went on our walk, and then a little later, he left. I was sad. This was the chapter plant sale of the Rocky Mountain Chapter of the North American Rock Garden Society, which he says is always a good sale, and he came back with plants. I stopped being sad.



You can see that the flats are already partly empty, because he was busy planting. He used his Swedish rock garden trowel to plant. He says that different plants require different trowels, which I don’t believe. He says a lot of stuff.090708

But why, I wondered, did he think that he needed more plants to begin with? It isn’t like the garden is empty or anything. There are plants everywhere. I didn’t get it, and he tried to explain it away by saying something about how some of the plants might not make it through the winter. But what if they all did make it? When he says that something probably won’t live, and won’t get very big, then next year, it’s a tree.

I know that autumn is coming (the guy I live with says so, and promises it will eventually be less hot than it is now), and that that’s the beginning of the dry season here (I don’t understand how a place where it almost never rains can have a “dry season”), and he has to water all the new plants, and might forget one, or twenty, but I still don’t get it.

Then he tried to compare it to biscuits. One biscuit is good, but twenty are better. I get the math, but I eat biscuits. They’re good, and I like them a lot. Plants are just plants. So I still don’t get it.

He says we’re going to watch the movie Key Largo; the scene where Frank McCloud (Bogart) tells Johnny Rocco that what he wants in life is more. Rocco wants more. The guy I live with wants more. More plants. This is just plain weird.

Well, that’s about it. I don’t know why I had to be left alone, and don’t know why there have to be more plants in an already stuffed garden. Maybe I will when we watch the movie, which I don’t really want to do.

I’ll say goodbye now, and leave you with some pictures of a different owl who was sitting on the pole just this evening. I was going to write “an owl that” or “an owl which”, but of course the right choice is “an owl who”. The stuff I think of, huh. Look at those talons.






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11 Responses to I don’t get it

  1. Susan ITPH says:

    That owl’s got his head on a swivel, doesn’t he? I was thinking there has been a paucity of bunny pictures on the blog recently.

    • paridevita says:

      Um, that’s something we don’t talk about. There were two rabbits (grown ups) in the garden this afternoon, looking at each other (maybe discussing what to do), but, without going into detail, we do know what’s been going on.

  2. Thea says:

    “Not going into detail,” huh. I suspect that’s code for something.

    Awesome (as we say in SoCal) owl, awesome photos. Truly awesome owl, truly awesome photos..

    Chess, ask your person if those are Parrot Poppies in the photos. If so, he scored. Hard to find in
    our area. Once in, they pop up in unexpected places. Tip: don’t transplant well. We have yellow- flowered, I lust for the pink. If only I could grow verbena boneriensis so well.

    Petey, the Dandy Dinmont, appreciates your portrait profile. Shredder, the Maltese, is entirely self-focused.

    Oh, Chess, never too many, never too much. We have a small rose-stuffed garden, five more await planting. Take your instruction from Key Largo. Bogart had the True Gen.

    • paridevita says:

      It is code. For, uh, leftovers.
      Here, they say “ossum”. How ossum that they come into your yard. We decided to have an ossum profile portrait. The owl is so ossum.
      The poppies are ossum Glaucium hybrids that Panayoti brought to the sale. I bought almost all of them.

  3. Fisher, the Wonder Dog says:

    Remarkable that thing the owls can do with their heads. My grammy says when she was a little girl her mommy would take her to a small, trailside zoo that had numerous woodland creatures in their care. Not the sort of place my grammy would ever think of going now, EVER!, seeing how she feels about keeping wild animals in captivilty and any animals in cages. But back then, when she was just starting to form opinions on these and other such matters, her little girl self was fascinated by the owl at this zoo. It was kept in a large, circular cage and her little girl self enjoyed staring eye to eye at the owl. After a while, the owl would close its eyes and swivel its head 90 degrees (with very deliberate dignity) and then open its eyes, at which point my grammy, as her little girl self, would run around to the side of the cage that the owl was now facing and the game would begin again. Bertie, the owl my grampy picked up at the local Agway, also has a head that swivels, but not in an especially life-like way and we have strong reason to suspect that he is not really fooling anyone that he is supposedly intended to fool.

    • paridevita says:

      For some mysterious reason my neighbors’ roof attracted pigeons, who would line up along the peak of the roof. No other house attracted pigeons. There were always pigeons there.
      Then one day a plastic owl landed on the roof, and the pigeons disappeared. After a while the plastic owl flew away, probably to Kansas, which is where things fly to, and the pigeons came back.

  4. Vivian Swift says:

    WOW!! A profile shot!! What a handsome DoG!

    I get it. The owls are crapping out little white cotton tails. Oh well, that’s the circle of life.

    The Planting Fields have been on my mind since the guy you live with mentioned them a few weeks ago. I haven’t been there in years and really, one should take advantage of everything that/what the North Shore of Long Island has to offer, so off I went. The A to Z tree collection was lovely although there was no quince, which is a surprise since quince has been grown in the northeast since the Pilgrims planted their first orchards. And the rose gardens (there are two) are hack: one is all drift roses and the other is all knockout. Not an heirloom as far as the eye can see. But the dahlia garden is in bloom and it’s beautiful and the itty bitty Italian Garden is fully restored and quite bijoux.

    Since I can only vote once (on my own computer) for your blog as Best New Gardening Blog as per your link last week, I went to the library and voted for your blog on all six of the computers there.

    Chess, the guy you live with seems to know a lot of stuff about stuff. Does he know of any good trivia about Muses? So far, I only know of the one from Varro, who wrote that muses are born from the movement of water, which I find very poetic. I’d like to find out more about their personal habits. Was Clio a pack rat? Did Terpsichore take herself too seriously and wear a lot of make up? Did any of them speak Farci?

    • paridevita says:

      Yes, we don’t talk about what the owls do. We live in kind of a fantasy world where everything is completely wonderful. Sometimes.
      What the guy I live with remembers about Planting Fields, besides seeing an osprey, were the Ilexes (Ilices?) in the Synoptic Garden. He doesn’t grow a one; they fry in our hot winter sun.
      Muse Trivia. That has to be one of the most recondite of subjects. The guy I live with is bothered by their mom, Mnemosyne. He remembers too much.

      • Fisher, the Wonder Dog says:

        I, too, once thought that I remembered too much, but then I realized that I was just spending too much time remembering. Now I hardly remember anything.

      • paridevita says:

        The guy I live with has what they call a photographic memory. It’s as unfocused as his pictures are.

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