Every so often someone tells me they don’t have a green thumb. Sometimes my thumb cracks and splits in its brown stained skin, but rarely is it green. Those rare times are paired with a green index finger because I’ve been squashing harlequin beetles and their drunken juices of plant blood paints my skin for a time.
Recently a woman I know said the same as an excuse for not knowing what a corn ear worm was. It reminded me of something I read less recently about how common it is now to preface a statement with a qualifier of a group one belongs to. “As an X person, I think Y.” Or, as a person with A experience, my perspective on this is B.”
The piece went on to discuss how such a qualifier seems to negate the ability to enter into discourse. I cannot begin to disagree with Y or B, without it being taken as an affront to the person’s experience as a person of X or A.
And so this woman qualified her lack of knowledge in the tamest way, and while it isn’t the same line of thinking as the piece I read, it does remind me how somehow, often women, provide an excuse for their curiosity or lack of knowledge. Why is that? What conditioning created that habit and why does it persist?
Anyway. Double digressions entwined in a mess.
I don’t feel as though I have a green thumb. I feel as though I offer seeds to the soil and watch them burst, wobble, or waiver. If I think I start to know better, nature will usually bop me for my arrogance. Then follow the bop with an offering of her own in the form of new knowledge of how she works, or when to step back, or simply a beautiful “weed.”
A scarecrow, in a field of corn, to keep the birds at bay.
A sharecrow, in rows of beans, to feed them come what may.
I’m reading a book. I’ve forgotten the name in my currently foggy (“thick as peanut butter!” / “you mean pea soup!” / “you eat what you like and I’ll eat what I like!” ) brain. It tells of learning of farming from observation, documentation, and old timers.
One old timer the author learned from spoke of feeding the crows when the corn seedlings were small, so they left the sprouts alone until they were big enough that the crows left them be.
An unintentional parallel in my garden, currently.
With these from feet away and peas in the salad picked moments before, our meal is made.
The beans will be ready for a first pick tomorrow or the next day. The peas will have their last harvest the next day or tomorrow. The tides turn with their speed. The earth spins with hers. The garden moves at its own pace. I’m merely here to watch it turn.