Tuesday, December 7, 2010

My Creativity, Let Me Show You... Wait.

Prompt #6 – Make. What was the last thing you made? What materials did you use? Is there something you want to make, but you need to clear some time for it?

Oh, hell yes, I'm skipping around. Deal with it.

I'm not particularly creative. I always mean to be, but it usually just results in a lot of supplies from A.C. Moore collecting dust in my closet.

The last thing I "made", technically, would be the picture frames I (finally) have hanging in my bedroom. 75% off at Target, white frames that wouldn't look out of place in someone's beach house, slightly dinged up. A little sandpaper and some elbow grease later, they're "shabby chic" or whatever we're calling "distressed" these days, and home to a print my BFF made while she was at Oberlin of Moxy Fruvous mascot Cedric, and a Jesse Rinyu print of Don't Run I Love You.

I've never really been crafty. My art skills stalled out somewhere around "stick figure", and my multi-medium skills aren;t much hotter.

But y'know what I can do? Man, I grow a mean plant.

No, really. Mean.

I started gardening this past year, or at least, some vague facsimile thereof. I don't have my own lawn, and I refuse to maintain my landlord's choice of landscaping, so really, I just have a lot of pots full of green things.

There's one guy I'm particularly proud of. We'll call him Trevor since, well, that's his name.

Trevor was cultured from a generic mint plant procured at one of the Boulder supermarkets in - I dunno, March? April-ish? He tried to die a whole bunch, but through sheer dumb persistence, and a couple of new pots, I forced him to enjoy living. Maybe a little bit too much.

Before I skipped town in May, I held a mint mojito party - mostly as an excuse to trim Trevor down before leaving town, so I wouldn't need to replant him, again, when I got back. While I was gone, he was harvested for a second time by friends taking care of him, and grew back within the month.

I know I shouldn't be astounded. He's a mint plant. He's basically a weed with flavor. But he's my weed with flavor, goddammit.

Now it's December, and he's been living indoors since October. He's none too pleased about it, either. Despite my best efforts, he has a family of gnats living in his soil, that I suspect will be there til it gets warm enough for me to repot him. My apartment gets very little light during the winter, so we have the same daily conversation:

Me: Trevor, you can't grow so quickly. There's no light.
Trevor: I grow how I wanna!
Me: Trevor, you're wasting a ton of energy making new stalks that reach towards the light. Just chill out and conserve.
Trevor: I grow where I wanna!
Me: They're coming in sad and yellow. You can't photosynthesize enough energy to make all these shoots happy.
Trevor: I grow how I wanna!

And, yes, in my head, Trevor sounds exactly like Liam Lynch circa Sifl & Olly.

So I trim back his leaves that he proves, every day, he can't sustain, and we have the same argument, waiting for the spring, when he can go back out on the patio and become the Audrey fucking Two of mint plants. But he's my buddy, now. Easier to take care of (and quieter) than a puppy, tastier than a baby. We're pretty happy with each other, despite our differences.

He's staring at me as I'm typing this, wondering how in god's name I've managed to anthropomorphize a common kitchen herb. Quit staring at me, plant. There's rum in the fridge.


  1. If I remember my NPR gardening shows correctly (You Bet Your Garden), you should put a layer of sand on top of your potting soil. It will let water through but will be too heavy for the gnats to climb out.

    And yes, I might just comment on each of your posts. It's a slow day at work.

  2. Yup. The gnats can't burrow through to lay eggs, and the larvae and can't crawl through to make more gnats. Already on it.