Thursday, April 23, 2009

Pretty Plastic Lawns

It's warming up in Minnesota, which means landscaping is around the corner. This is going to require truckloads of alcohol. Plain and simple, I just don't give a shit if everything is pruned into plastic-looking globes.

It's not natural anyway, people. Suburbs are starting to resemble the Barbie Townhouse with those perfect bushes, three flowers on each one.

Every year we plant a tree in the front yard and it never survives. It's getting creepy because we're starting to name them. The Blonde Bombshell had a head of white flowers. She lasted a month. I think my husband cried over her.

Big Red, she was a pistol. It rained so much, she was literally floating in the hole like a bobber on a lake. My neighbor, god bless him, came over and tethered her back. A week later he said, "So, did you notice that I saved your tree? She was laying on her side, dead."

I'm going to translate that to, "You two are fucking idiots. How are you raising children if you can't see the tree begging for help in your front yard?" (Actually, he would never say such a thing, but it would be funny if he did.)

Then the bushes. I can't handle the criticism when I go to these landscaping places. I was planting cotoneasters around the patio and needed more. I told the botanist, "I need more, uh, cotton-easters, could you show me where they are?"

She said, "You mean ca-tone-ee-ASS-terzzzz." Really? Was it necessary to emphasize ass?

However you pronouce them, almost all of them are dead. Our patio resembles a gothic picnic party.

Now I have to return the dead ca-tone-ee-ASS-terzzzzz and get my money back, which is so humiliating. I feel like such a failure hauling all the limp weeds back to the store.

But I will. Because I'm no quitter, damnit. You'll see me out there, sweating, swearing, and drinking, as I work to get something, anything, to survive in our yard.

Our house will never look like the Barbie Townhouse, but I will get a green thing to live in our yard. I promoise. Even if it takes 50 years.


  1. Hey, Kel!
    I love your blogs! Are you practicing for a career as a stand-up comic? I can totally see you on-stage - with the rest of us mothers sitting there peeing our pants as we laugh out loud!

    (by the way, the e-mail address listed in your blog,, doesn't work for me. Is it listed correctly?)
    Love to all,

  2. I thought you should know...

    Brian and Jonah took me to our local nursery for my very first mother's day. To honor this special day, we bought a tree. I insisted we plant it in front of Jonah's bedroom window. As it grew in to this majestic tree, he could look at it and say..."That's Bob, my Mom planted it for me." Bob was the name of our tree. Yes, we named ours as well. Needless to say, Bob made it through that first summer...barely. I kept him for 2 years, a 4 foot dead stick protruding from our yard. I couldn't get rid of it, because I felt like if I gave up on Bob...I was a failure. So, I totally get it. Just wanted to share, you are not alone.

    Love, Wendy

  3. Honey pie, go buy yourself some Red Twigged Dogwoods. They are un-killable. Seriously, I even cut branches off of them, shove them into the dirt and a new tree/shrub grows.


  4. Honey Pie.
    You need to go the nursery immediately and buy some Red Twigged Dogwoods. They are un-killable. Really. I even cut branches off of them, shove them into the dirt and they grow!

  5. From Minnesota? So am I. Ironic!

    I have written three times now but your blog is HILARIOUS in many respects and at the same time, full of reminders about how we should value and reflect on life. I LOVE IT! My blog is quite depressing but I think you have inspired to kick it up a few notches and quit with the depressing shit!