At the store, my wife likes to randomly snatch things off shelves.
Sometimes this has a purpose, other times not.
“Do we really need a plastic plant?” I asked as she flipped one into the cart.
“It is only a dollar,” she said, as if that were explanation enough.
“Why don’t you buy a real one?” I asked.
“Because I don’t like to water them,” she said.
“So you buy fakes?”
“That’s about it,” she said.
“I like the real ones,” I told her.
“Enough to water them?”
The thing is, I hate plastic plants. I hate “plastic” anything. I don’t so much dislike the material as I resent it posing as something else. In my humble opinion, a thing should be what it is rather than pretend to be what it is not.
So much of our modern world is like that. We have plastic plants, electric fireplaces and fake stone exteriors. Why can’t things be what they are?
What worries me is that we have become conditioned to it. We accept fake things, knowing they are fake.
Our cars have naugahyde seats and ersatz wood paneling. Our restaurants serve artificial creamer and imitation crab meat. Heck, even the food we eat isn’t necessarily food. Ice cream is routinely thickened with Bentonite, which I hate to tell you — is clay.
We are so used to fake stuff, we aren’t even aware when we are eating dirt.
So as soon as we got home, I made a stand. I headed directly for the sink to fill a jug with water and like a busy bee, I visited every plant in the house. I was determined to maintain the last vestiges of nature in our household.
When I was done, I was pleased. So too was my wife. The proof was in her smile.
“Greg…” she said.
Holding high a pot, streaming droplets onto the floor, she asked, “If you don’t like fake plants, why do you water them?”