Potted Mums

Now it's Fall, and the potted mums are out everywhere.  Every convenience store, gas station and grocery store has a display of potted mums set up outside.  Every stoop, every porch, every gate, all decorated with potted mums.

Someone at work told me that getting a divorce is as stressful as a death.  In The Year of Magical Thinking, Joan Didion talks about avoiding paths and places that remind her of her dead husband.  I picked that book for my book club, because I wanted to explore the issue of grieving as it related to my own experience.  I guess I could have read the book on my own and figured that out, but I also wanted to see if anyone else would have a perspective on this matter.  As it turned out, everyone in the book club hated The Year of Magical Thinking, except, notably, the two divorced girls.  For us, there was a lot to relate to in that book.  Getting a divorce is not just like experiencing the death of a loved one.  It is experiencing the death of a loved one.  The person you married is dead to you.  The only difference is, you're still stuck with these fuck-faces for years after the event.  Either you're stuck with them, the person, or you're stuck with the repercussions of their actions.  It doesn't really matter, you're not as free to move on as if they were six feet under.  Even if you really, really want to.  I think that's actually kind of worse.

I can easily think of a few places I prefer to avoid for the reasons described by Joan Didion.  Danforth GO station, Woodbine TTC station, the Woodbine and Danforth neighbourhood in general, third floor Eaton Centre near the Roots.  There are more. 

And, there are things.  In October 2006, I put potted mums on my front and back stoops.  I would have done it anyway, but this time it wasn't to make my house look cute only for the sake of personal pride, it was to sell it and start something new with someone.  I put purple mums out front and white mums out back.  In the mornings, I would pick out all the maple keys that had fallen into the mums over the course of the night and I would think that I was kind of sad to be leaving that little imperfect house but I would assure myself it didn't matter, it was okay - because we were doing something great.

Well.

It's not that I don't think mums are pretty anymore, but I hate them.  I really fucking hate mums.  I can't stand them, and I can't avoid them when they're everywhere.

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