Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Bad Things (Part II)

Well, it has been a research paper that has held me up,  my anxious garden friends, not jail.  Though post graduate education is sort of like jail, come to think of it.  It seems to take forever to get out, and once you are out, you're not quite sure you can integrate into the real world.

So just a quick recap, for those of you whom I can't induce to read the first part (hint), Bad Things, Part I, exhausted from staying up the night before, due to the arsonist, and returning home with a fresh new pair of pruners,  the protagonist of this tale turned down the path of (mild)evil and decided to liberate two cuttings from their bushy homes in front of a non-abandoned church mid service..........

Before I continue, just so you can get a clearer picture of the circumstance, you need to know that I too am one of those people WHO NEVER DO STUFF LIKE THIS, not because I'm afraid of jail (that never even crossed my mind, you people really are a wee anxious, I must say!), but because I am a rule follower by nature and fall apart if I get caught doing anything.  I don't even tell white lies well.   So when I tell you my heart was pounding because so far all signs had pointed to this being a bad idea, I'm not kidding: it was pounding.

I looked to the left, I looked to the right, and saw nobody looking at the miniature parking lot with one extra administrative space, noticed nobody that looked like church personnel, then slowly, stealthily snuck into the spot.  Finally, I was committed.... or was I?  I had this herky jerky feeling as I put the car in park.. this was WRONG!  Now, not only was I about to borrow rose cuttings, but I was also PARKING ILLEGALLY!  This crime was growing exponentially!  Its like lying, you cannot just tell one lie! Now I understand how people become career criminals... it can happen in mere seconds.  Rose Rustling the gateway crime.

And, what if the m.i.a. church person came? I'd be trapped, potentially by a man of God, and then be forced to lie on top of stealing and trespassing and illegal parking!  Caught up in this moral quagmire induced anxiety, I put the car back into reverse and started to leave.  I really did, but just as quickly I reversed positions and said out loud to myself "Jess, people park in other peoples spaces all of the time.. nobody ever died of this, what is wrong with you!? Just get the (badword) roses already, you could have walked here 3 times over in this amount of time!" and then pulled once more into the space and turned the car running lights off.  Good grief, already.

Now, let me tell you something, having a Prius has more advantages than gas mileage for those sneak-thief oriented individuals.  It is totally silent if you are going under 10 mph or so.  Meaning I could hide the black car in the dimly lit space, totally on, but not looking or sounding like it, and then run out pruners aloft, get the rose cuttings, run back in, throw it in reverse, and peel out silently in seconds flat.  Its probably the best getaway car ever made, come to think of it, so at least I had that going for me.  I looked up and down the street for a car that looked suspiciously like a church mobile, and seeing none I gave myself 30 seconds, and I was off at a trot, like a pro, clicking back the pruner safety as I ran.

The bushes, which are about 7-8 feet tall were encased in shadow, and looked nothing like their daytime counterparts. I couldn't see one stem from another.   "Ah, this is finally going well, ya big wussy" I though to myself as I reached for the large bush to position the pruners. Snip.  One fell into my hand.  I reached in again, feet poised for the getaway, grabbed the bush and .... OOOOOWWWWWWWWHHHH!  I looked at my bloodied thumb.  The bush had meted its justice.  I had a mega gash in my thumb from what could only have been the worlds largest and sharpest ultra-thorn.   This by far was the worst gardening injury I have sustained thus far in life.  I am totally not exaggerating when I say it could have killed me. Yes I am, but I want drama. And holy crap: now I had left DNA on the scene! All those years of watching CSI were for naught...I am the worst criminal ever!

Run away, run away! I took my one cutting, thumb in mouth, and ran back to the Prius, and peeled (silently) out of the parking lot.  I didn't look back until I had reached the corner, the cutting tossed on the passenger seat not even in the carefully retained water.

I would love to tell you that somehow I lost my pruners in this attempt because it would be both fitting and a wonderful story ender, but sadly it wasn't the case.  I made it home, 45 seconds later, no fuzz on my tail.  Safe.

But there is a lesson in here somewhere, a real moral to the story, and just in case you haven't figured it out, this entire tale is to let you all know so you don't make the same mistake I did:

Do not pick roses in the dark.

okay okay, just kidding... and I know, I know.  I did a bad thing.


  1. Well written. I can feel your anxiety and your pain! As a rules person too, I still have palpatations when making a right turn on red. Hope your cuttings take - enjoy.

  2. Who knew...the Prius is the perfect getaway car! ;) Good to know for future rose-rustling career criminals LOL. It was amusing that the rose exacted its own justice on you though, but I hope your thumb has recovered. I really do hope, after all that effort, that your cutting takes!

  3. Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive. Jess, you will never make a good career criminal. You had to go back to get your pruners, but forgot your gardening gloves? Such a fitting punishment to be stabbed until bleeding! ;) I do hope, now that the 'deed' is done, that your rose cutting takes root. But every time you see your new rose, you will remember its sordid past. I'm a mother - can you tell? Have I made you feel guilty enough yet? If so, then my work here is done! PS: Glad you weren't in jail!

  4. I drive a Prius and was under the obviously mistaken impression that they are only driven by upstanding, law abiding, non-skulking, guilt free, environmentally friendly, good people. Boy was I wrong!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. Yep, the WORST part of your crime is that it is committed against a church property. God would give you roses anytime you asked Him. Start praying blondie.

  6. I don't know, is is stealing so much as helping the rose to go forth and multiply?

  7. It would have been bad to dig the rose up, not take a cutting. How else are we going to spread the love. Mother Nature thanks you. Come cut in my garden anytime the spirit claims your soul......

  8. :) I'd like to say I get this way because my moral code is so strict, but honestly, its this weird quirk I have... I can not deal with the consequences of getting caught in any minorly ethically questionable situation. The one ticket I ever got in my whole life was for an illegal u-turn and I was seconds from crying when the cop came up. He felt so bad and kept apologizing to me and telling me it was really okay, it was just a ticket!

  9. So funny!!! I've never taken a cutting but am feeling inspired by your post to possibly engage in some botanical burglary. Your rule following is funny, too. Ok, I know it's not supposed to be funny, but I only follow rules when I absolutely have to, so I am also feeling inspired to follow a rule just so I can break it. :o)

  10. Hilarious. I really can't see this as being bad but then my mother was the worst example. She would take cuttings from anywhere, brazenly carrying a shovel in the back of her car at all times, ready to jump out and dig up plants out of ditches that caught her eye.

  11. Jess, LOL. I too am a rule follower (the type who follows one-way arrows in an empty parking lot at midnight), so this really resonated for me; my heart was pounding just reading this! Have you ever read any of Alexander McCall Smith's Sunday Philosophy Club series? Isabel Dalhousie, the protagonist of these books, is the editor of the academic Journal of Applied Ethics and the sort of person who can't cross the street without turning it into an ethical dilemma. These books make me laugh out loud, and I think you might enjoy them too (while you are recuperating from the injuries sustained in your life of crime). -Jean