It was inevitable. Our beautiful patio that I have been writing about for weeks, the beautiful locale that produced the lovely flowers and tasty tomatoes, had became a place that required “work” and produced “conflict.” All of a sudden, there were issues to be resolved:
Who is responsible for watering the plants?
Who should take care of the minutia of problems that crop up with live plants and flowers?
Who should get rid of the pigeons that have set up a permanent nest on our roof and no matter what we do, come back and crap on everything?
Who should rid the patio of the two wasp hives that have suddenly developed outside?
Who should spray the patio with scary pesticides after a quarter of of our plants have been eaten by pests? (I did — wearing a mask, goggles and winter hat to protect myself from the fumes!)
And who’s at fault for a broken pot — the one who tripped over it or the one who put it in the “wrong” place?
When I told Finn and Charming with Single about this, they suggested that the garden is a metaphor for marriage. What starts out all fun and romantic, falls apart if taken for granted. Like everything else, it NEEDS WORK to thrive.
All this drama has affected my blog writing. Have you ever been in a really bad mood or so upset at your wife that you couldn’t focus on writing a post, so you decided to ask someone to write a “guest post” for you?
Unfortunately, I had trouble deciding on who to ask to “substitute” for me at my blog. After all, who amongst you could maintain the usual high quality of “Citizen of the Month.” I certainly don’t want you plastering photos of your snot-filled babies or your LOLcats all over the place. (to my detractors — posting photos of Sophia holding out tomatoes is a completely different thing. Great writers and poets have been writing about gardens and the symbolism of vegetation since the beginning of time).
I walked to my local Starbucks, hoping to be inspired by all the conversation around me, but all I could think about was the same thing that had been on mind all day — why would Sophia (expurgated) when I told her that (expurgated), since — tell me if I’m wrong — isn’t marriage supposed to be (expurgated)?
“Screw it, ” I told myself. I don’t want to write anything today. If I had my druthers, I would just throw in another photo of Sophia in a dress, but then those literary NY bloggers will stop reading me, thinking me too superficial and “LA.”
So, I still needed a post, but I was dry. I had no one to turn to. So, I had an idea. Why not just pass my laptop to the Asian guy sitting next to me in Starbucks? I’m sure he can write a decent post for “Citizen of the Month.” It certainly couldn’t be worse than letting ONE OF YOU do a guest post!
Neil:Â Â “Hey, what’s your name?”
Matt:Â Â “Matt.”
Neil:Â Â “What do you do, Matt?”
Matt:Â Â “I’m a graduate student in economics at UCLA.”
Neil:Â Â “Great. Here’s the laptop. Write about anything you want. My readers are curious to hear your views.”
The Love of a Woman by Matt (guest-blogging for Citizen of the Month)
Love sucks. Love is like a virus that first attacks the brain, then the heart. It destroy everything inside of you, until you are left dead and decaying on the hot pavement, the only sound that you can hear coming from your old apartment, as your ex-girlfriend screws that new guy she met, screaming his name like a wild coyote.
Matt suddenly started to sob.
Matt:Â Â “I hate her… and love her.”
Neil:Â Â “Uh, very interesting, Matt, but not really what I was looking for. I usually try for more “upbeat” posts. Your post is too depressing. But thanks for trying…. (under my breath)… nutcase.”
I grabbed my laptop and searched for another guest poster. On the opposite side of Starbucks, I saw another guy — a blond, beach boy type — sitting with his friend and laughing. He seemed to be in a great mood. I immediately ran over to him.
Neil:Â Â “Hi, there. Would you like to guest post on my blog today?”
Pete:Â Â “Sure.”
Neil:Â Â “What’s your name?”
Pete:Â Â “Pete.”
Neil:Â Â “Go for it, Pete. Write for “Citizen of the Month.”
My Weekend by Pete (guest blogging for Citizen of the Month)
I had a great weekend. I love my life. On Saturday, I played some beach volleyball, then met this new girl on the beach. She looked great in her bikini. At night we went to see Transformers, and then she came back to my place. We must have f***ed all night. She was amazing in bed. She was insatiable. On Sunday, I went to church, as usual. When I came back, this chick was waiting for me with a homemade breakfast. She’s a great cook. We f***ed some more and then went out for some fish tacos. I was so hungry after all that glorious f***ing. At the Mexican joint, she told me how great I was in bed and that I was the best f*** in Redondo Beach…
Neil:Â Â “Wait… wait… hold on… this post is way too upbeat for my taste. Your weekend sounds 1000x better than mine. And I really don’t like that last line about you in bed, because I’ve been trying to give my readers a different impression of what’s best in Redondo Beach.”
Pete:Â Â “Hey, I’m sorry, dude. I’m just telling the facts.”
Neil:Â Â “Well, like I said, the post is too happy. Just like the other guy’s post was too depressing. I’m looking for a post that’s JUST RIGHT.
The first guest poster, Matt came over, tears still in his eyes.
Matt:Â Â “Hey, did I hear you say that this girl told you that you were the best f*** in Redondo Beach?”
Pete:Â Â “That’s right.”
Matt:Â Â “That’s bullshit. That’s what my girlfriend use to say to me.”
Pete:Â Â “Well, sorry, dude.”
Matt:Â Â “Wait a minute… is this girl’s name Meg?”
Pete:Â Â “That’s right. Meg.”
Matt:Â Â “That’s my girlfriend. You were doingÂ my ex-girlfriend. You son of a…”
Matt grabbed Pete and wrestled with him in the middle of Starbucks.
The barista, a burly guy with a goatee, ran out from behind the counter.
Barista:Â Â “Hey, stop it, you asses! Neither of you know what you are talking about. Meg told me that I was the best f*** in Redondo Beach!”
Matt:Â Â “You too? You bastard.”
Matt threw a punch at the barista. Pete threw a punch at Matt, who went flying against the the glass of the pastry display. CRASH! The espresso machines became unhinged and blasted hot water upwards, blowing holes in the ceiling.
Neil:Â Â “Yes!!!! I finally have a post to write. This is not too depressing. This is not too happy. This is JUST RIGHT!”
Update later:Â I apologize for letting you read this crazy post, which really makes no sense at all.Â Â Â Substitute this instead:
A Year Ago on Citizen of the Month:Â Â Her Real NameÂ Â (I asked bloggers to tell me their REAL names, not their phony blog names. Feel free to add to the list)