Sunday, October 16, 2011

I'll Give Myself a C+

Did you ever find something in a long-forgotten box that zaps you back in time? My trigger was an old landscape plan I ran across last week, from my early school days. Like the goat herder at the Qumran Caves, I knew I held a piece of history in my hands. Gingerly, and with reverence, I liberated the scroll from a crusty, desiccated rubber band, carefully unfurling it.

The title block said 1975, so imagine my relief as I scanned this barely familiar drawing and did not wince.

In the early 70s, I wasn't sure what I would do with an ornamental horticulture education, but the music industry's flake factor had claimed another victim, and I realized I'd better find something new to do. I thought about my hobbies and passions.

I had become enchanted by the exquisite art of bonsai (gateway drug to Japanese gardens and culture), fascinated by the way nature's forces and raw beauty could be captured and stylized at a human scale. My crush on chlorophyll didn't stop there. Like a Days of Our Lives junkie, I found myself deeply and emotionally invested in the turbulent lives of my 50 houseplants.

Off to school I skipped, and after two years of study, earned my associate's degree from Pierce College in LA, memorizing hundreds of multisyllabic botanical names and deciphering the mysterious sand-silt-clay triangle. I learned how to flocculate, which has nothing to do with bodily functions or puberty.

Click over to for the rest of the story...

No comments: