Sunday, April 10, 2011
HORTICULTURAL CLASS NOTES
The Rev. Dana Prom Smith, S.T.D., Ph.D. (4/10/2011)
First off, the necrology report. Remember good, old Jack Aspen? Well, he reportedly froze to death last winter. In our Class Year Book he wrote how he’d always wanted to “live beside the road and be a friend to man.” At first, he was reported as “went missing,” but then in the spring after the snow melt, his neighbors found him in a berm of snow, ice, cinders, and salt, buried by the city’s snow plows. The coroner found residue of the narcotic “honeydew.” There had always been the suspicion that he hung around with a
street gang called The Aphids whose leader was called Slime. He might have overdosed on “organic foreign substances” and got himself buried in that five foot snowfall we had last year. All he ever wanted to be was a friend to man.
Also, I’m sad to report the death of Sally Rhododendron from a failure to acclimate. She won the beauty pageant her first year. She roomed with Susie Gardenia down in the foreign exchange student dorm. One year, I think it was the
sophomore, they were put on probation for “strutting their stuff,” as Dean Radcliffe Rabbitbrush put it, during the Ice Carnival and Parade. I think he meant flaunting their body parts while everyone else was stylishly decked out in L.L. Bean mummy bags suitable for 30ºF below. Officially, the probation report read, “Failure to Adapt.” He predicted they would come to no good end. Sally’s death was slow, but Susie went quickly. Susie used a lot of perfume and makeup and was snubbed for it.
Now, the good news. I think all of you will remember Scarlet Penstemon and her brother Rocky at the Class Day Ceremonies.
Scarlet and Rocky were the first of their family to go to college. Rocky got the Rocky Mountain Award for spending every night warming his heirloom tomatoes until the danger of frost was past, some sixty nights, a record.
The family has done well in the current adverse conditions and has even won the Governor’s Acclimatization Award. New Penstemons are popping up all over, like Jack Aspen’s former habitat.
Their emphasis has been horticultural authenticity, like in Sunset Penstemon. Freddie Fescue's big into authenticity, too. He was often called Arizona because his great grand father was a first-settler, homesteading a big spread out near Lava Flow. Well, anyways, his
cousin Ferdie Fescue got nicknamed Sheep for reasons that don’t need to be spelled out in our column. He got admitted as a legacy. His grandfather donated Fescue Organic Commons.
You’ll remember that Arizona and Sheep started a fraternity called The Natives. Some of our class mates called them The Clumps. They were finally disbanded because of their discriminatory policies, having black balled some foppish dude who called himself Colonel Blue Grass. He sported a string tie instead the bolo tie. Talk about out of place. Well, it turns out that Arizona and Sheep were right. Colonel Blue Grass was a subversive, who should’ve been on the university’s Weed Watch List. Expelled in his junior year for exoticism, he thought he was some kind of trophy grass.
Nobody can forget Rosy Antennaria. Her nickname was Pussytoes because she wore little fluffy things on her Wellies. She was a little low to the ground if you know what I mean. Well, anyways, she’s chairwoman of our tenth reunion festivities.
She’s got several contests. One is called the Hang In There contest, like who survived winter with the least damage. Last year it was won by Jethro Juniper and the year before that by Jerry Gambel. Remember, Jerry was really good at the twist and won lots of contests. Even though it was kind of out-of-date, he was so good at it that he kept on twisting himself right into a permanent corkscrew. Well, I heard from Ferdie that he's in some kind of orthopedic treatment to unscreew him. It's suppposed to be kind of painful.
At any rate, this year she’s only accepting flowers, not even vegetables. I’m putting in for Rose Woods. Gets glossy red hips in the summer. Never seen them, but I heard tell they’re really something. See you in June.
Copyright © Dana Prom Smith 2011