Last legs.

Let’s see. Today. What can I tell you about today? I can tell you that Siggi and I determined that I need a sledgehammer for Valentine’s Day this year. We can paint it pink and put little heart and flower stickers all over it. It will be precious.

Why do I need a sledgehammer for Valentine’s Day? Well, let’s just say that I may or may not need to murder a laptop. Even Siggi agrees that it’s probably time to euthanize the thing and put it out of its damn misery. Let’s face it: when it takes longer than three minutes to open an e-mail and upwards of 12-15 minutes to open a PDF, and then another 1-2 minutes to switch windows from said PDF back to said e-mail, you either want to stab your eye with a fork or else bash your computer in with a sledgehammer. Unfortunately for my computer, it doesn’t really have much of a choice in the matter.

There is also the sad story of my favorite plant. Siggi’s mom gave me a pothos plant several years ago – probably nearly ten years ago, now – and I have loved it like it was my baby for all those ten years. It has thrived and thrived and thrived. It took up almost a third of our kitchen with its beautiful bushy vines. I had this stroke of brilliance over the summer where I decided to take a cutting to work and then I could have that little bit of happiness with me while I try not to bash my computer in with a sledgehammer. And it was really great. It started with two leaves and then there were six leaves and then there were seven, no, wait, six. And then there was a seventh leaf again, except then another one fell off. So every time it grew a new leaf, the next one closest to the soil would fall off. And then the leaves started falling off faster than they were growing. I couldn’t figure it out.

Eventually, I started to fear for the pothos’ life, and so I decided to investigate by checking on its root structure. And that is when I discovered that one of the roots found its way out through the bottom of the pot and was sitting in a pool of standing water in this little margarita glass I was holding the pot in. So it was getting too much water. No problem. I carefully repotted it and removed it from the margarita glass and I was so happy that I saved this little sapling’s life.

Meanwhile, back on the ranch, the mother plant began to have some troubles of its own. I don’t have any explanation for this one. It just started to die. All the leaves are withering and falling off. We investigated those roots, and they were rotten and brittle and sad, even though we have been watering it regularly (but not too regularly; honestly, we haven’t done anything differently in the last two months than we have done in the last ten years). I don’t know if we can save it. It sounds silly, but I have been actually crying over this. For some reason, the survival of this plant has some cosmic pull on me and if it dies, a part of me will die too. We tried repotting it, and so far it’s not dead, but I feel like we are just prolonging the inevitable.

Flashing back to the pothos at work, and my arrival back to the office on Monday. When I got to work, there was just one little leaf left on the thing. There had been at least four when I left the Wednesday before. I checked the soil and it was DRENCHED. Since I hadn’t watered it since before Christmas, I am figuring some kind soul probably felt sorry for it and decided to save it by WATERING IT. With a gallon of water. So who knows.

Anyway, after a couple days, even the last leaf was looking pretty darn sad, so I decided its best and perhaps only chance at survival would be for me to clip it off and put it in water to try to force new roots and plant it again. So I did. I put it in its own little cup of water, and it soaked it all right up! My little pothos leaf is alive and happy now. So I am hoping that over the weekend it will begin to grow some roots and won’t suck up all the water in the cup, wither away, and die. Because if I lose both these plants, I don’t know what I will do. I will have to have a pothos funeral.

Some people have pets. I have a plant.

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One response to “Last legs.

  • fiction dept

    You love your plant. I never heard of that type of plant – photo, please. I’m sure with all of your attention, you will do everything in your power to nurse the mother plant to health and get the cutting growing again.

    However, it could be that your cutting doesn’t like living in an office. And although I really don’t know anything about plants, I do know that they are living and there is a time to live and a time to die. Could it be that your mother plant has simply lived its full, wonderful life?

    Keep the faith.

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