Do Plants Matter?

December 26, 2008 | By | Comments (3)

My teenage son, who gets straight-A’s, got a B on his Biology exam. Why? He missed all the plant questions. I should outraged, but I’m not. I think it’s because my wife gave me some very good bourbon for Christmas. I’m going to use it as a teaching tool.

Eventually. Mmmmmm……that’s good stuff. Yesss, my, my. OK, why was I mad at Brian?

Oh yeah, right. He shamed our family by missing all of his plant questions. He says plants are lame and unimportant. With the help of this particular bourbon, I’m going to show him how wrong he is.

The bourbon, in case you’re wondering, is Basil Hayden’s. I discovered it at a restaurant in Kentucky that serves over 100 different bourbons. This particular brand uses a little more rye than normal and is very smooth, mellow, and a little sweet…kinda like me, after I’ve had some bourbon.

And just to show how mellow and sweet, I’ve decided to allow Brian to address all of Grumpiana and freely express his feelings about plants without any oversight from me. Here he is.

“Plants suck.”

I know I shouldn’t have allowed that. He is, after all, still dating his new I-Phone and his hormones have taken control.

Now I could refute Brian’s outrageous and totally ignorant statement about the unimportance of plants by pointing out that I make a living from writing about plants, which allows me to feed, clothe, shelter, and educate my disdainful son — not to mention lavishing him with the latest electronic devices that enable him to circumvent human interaction entirely.

I could present the Big Picture underscoring how plants supply us with grain, chocolate, vegetables, chocolate, fruit, chocolate, nuts, chocolate, tubers, chocolate, mushrooms, chocolate, lumber, chocolate, oil, chocolate, coal, chocolate, oxygen, chocolate, medicine, and, of course, chocolate.

I could proffer the argument that the beauty of plants feeds the soul — nearly as much as listening on your new I-Phone as some guy you don’t know in Finland turns his I-Phone into a harmonica and plays “Amazing Grace” in real-time.

But these arguments, to borrow Brian’s parlance, are lame. Son, do you want to know why every man should value plants?

Because plants give us flowers and women love getting flowers. Give women flowers often enough and they’ll give you things of even greater value.

Love and affection.

A date on New Year’s Eve.

A wedding in the Bahamas that her parents pay for.

Decades of companionship.

Children who eventually tolerate your presence.

Grandchildren you can spoil and leave their parents to deal with it.

Someone who buys your clothes so that people will stop laughing.

Someone to tell you that you really need a shower.

Someone to curl up with when it’s cold.

Someone to walk the beach with when it’s hot.

Someone to promise to spread your ashes in Niagara Falls.

Someone to spread them in a car-wash instead.

And, lest we forget —


Good bourbon.


  1. Grumpy Gardener

    I once had chocolate in a nice cab.
    Actually, I did enjoy wine with chocolate at a restaurant called Citrico’s (I think) at Walt Disney World. My wife and I had a 5-course wine dinner, with each course paired with a different wine. The sommelier insisted we have this very rich chocolate dessert with a special wine he said went perfectly with it. He was right.

    December 29, 2008 at 8:56 am
  2. Helen @ Gardening With Confidence

    You son has a different bent, accept that and relish in the fact that he will make a lot more money than a garden writer…do you ever have chocolate with a nice Cab…lovely

    December 27, 2008 at 5:07 pm
  3. Cameron (Defining Your Home Garden)

    The first time he brings home a girlfriend, take her for a spin around the garden. He will be humiliated and embarrassed, but the girl will think you’re sweet. You’ll have your revenge! 🙂
    P.S. They do eventually grow up and think you’re smart.

    December 27, 2008 at 8:19 am

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