They really are like airplanes. No sooner than one departs, another comes along.
After six years, I’ve become very comfortable with my independence. My responsibility doesn’t extend beyond me. What’s mine is mine. There’s no vampire sucking blood from my wallet (well, okay, the state of California does force me to send my ex- a check every month, but in hindsight it’s a good thing: sort of like legal coagulation). Even Lilli and Clifford are parasite-free.
According to my mouth, there are few pleasures on earth – among those that don’t involve chocolate or bacon, or both – more wonderful than a ripe, freshly picked tomato. This morning I plucked a perfect, red Roma from one of my plants. The color was incredible; my mouth had a little orgasm just thinking about how it would taste. I rinsed our prize and prepared to take a bite – but someone had gotten there before me! Sonofabitch! I poked among the stalks — and there he was, the jack-ass! A big fat hornworm!
I knew his butt was here somewhere; his presence was evidenced by the holes in the leaves he’d been poaching, but I couldn’t find him. In all honesty, I really don’t mind sharing – you know, all-God’s-chillun-livin-in-peace and all that crap. But couldn’t he have limited his gastronomic adventures to the leaves I wouldn’t have eaten anyway? Did he have to ruin my best tomato – a tomato to whose cultivation he contributed nothing? And now he just sat there – all fat and happy and full of my tomato – and mocked me.
I ran back into the house for a pair of tongs (are you kidding me? Of course I wasn’t going to touch him), but when I returned, weapon in hand, he’d again disappeared.
And why, you ask, do I refer to it as ‘he?’ Why do I just assume this so appropriately named leech was male?
Well, like the poacher I exiled six years ago, when it was time to stand up and be accountable, this one couldn’t handle it either.
A woman would have stood her ground and fought me for that tomato.