An English In Kentucky



















July 8th 2009


    Around the swimming pool is usually a stone or concrete bib.  This space has a most apparent function.  But often this space becomes an anathema and amongst the genteel the habit is to introduce clutter.  Not with bouncing balls, hula-hoops and large rubber ducks, rather with expensive and decorative accents that present communion with the outdoors as lolling indolence.  Then there is the large imported flower pot.

    Here, there are two kinds of gardener.  The sensible and wise man who digs, lifts and carries, uttering only the occasional grunt.  And the foolish man, who allows himself to get sucked into the vortex of what I will call "imported flower pot placement politics".  

    On the right is the older man with the check book, and his new hair style.  On the left is his unnaturally young wife.   He reckoned four flower pots costing a thousand dollars each  were sufficient.  She wanted an odd number, not three but five.  And this was a foot stamping moment in the great dialectic that is men and women.

    For some reason gardeners know nothing about furniture, or houses, or stock markets but are oracles when it comes to flower pot placement.  I had seen this quarrel coming.  Swimming pools defy budgeting.  A hole in the ground containing clean water, one might assume to be a straight forward matter.  But when this hole in the ground becomes an expression of personality, grief ensues.




    Standing there on a hot Saturday afternoon I became like Solomon reaching for a cabala.  I  suggested that odd numbers represent the informal, and even numbers the formal.  Odd numbers were the organic, the free spirited and the new, the balance of unevenness.   Whereas even numbers represented the geometry of order, reliability and those strands in thinking that describe the keystone of stability and permanence.  I rambled on and became enthused by this insanity of words, and I still cringe at the memory of it.

    His eyes glazed like a man in a coma, but she listened intently.  I appeared to make some sort of sense to her.  And by mid afternoon I was charged with acquiring six of the largest Lantana standards I could find.

    Had Heidegger been there, as a spider mite on the Ornamental Cherry perhaps, he might have concluded the authentic being is a constructed being, and that in the end we are all weeds.

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