Saturday, September 22, 2007
Meatpacking District, May 2007
People in my family have a very strange sense of humor. Here’s one of our e-mail exchanges, from Thursday, as an example.
Necessary background: Years ago, when I lived in Florida, a tiny oak tree began growing in a potted plant I kept on the balcony of my apartment. I transplanted it to my mother’s yard in Land O’ Lakes, a Tampa suburb. My mother has complained about this tree ever since: It drops too many leaves, its branches rub on the roof, etc. My brother J.M. and his wife Kristen recently visited my Mom, who has two cats, Ikky and Neffie.
Mom: Stephen, I want you to know that your oak tree is producing vast quantities of acorns. You can hear them hit the house at that end of the house. During a recent windstorm it was wild. JM, were you and Kristen bothered by these falling acorns? Soon the entire ground will be covered to the depth of one inch. When I look up into the tree, there are still millions.
J.M.: It is a sign. You should stew them and make mead in the tub. Or weave them into a nice hat.
Me: The squirrels will LOVE them!
J.M.: I'm with Stephen. Let the squirrels eat them, then weave the squirrels into a nice hat.
Mom: There are not enough squirrels in LOL to eat these acorns. I was talking to Ginger, my neighbor, the other day, and they were falling all around us. She was perplexed.
J.M.: One man unravels the mystery of falling apples hundreds of years ago and yet the residents of Land O' Lakes are confused by acorns?
Mom: Of course, Ikky can catch squirrels. He deposited a headless one at my front door.