James vs. the Plant

A week and a half ago I introduced a new houseplant into our home. The odds are stacked against it for several reasons, the top three reasons being: me, our cats, and me.

To shrug off the responsibility and the weight of years of plant neglect and subsequent deaths I have left in the wake of my life, I say that I do not have a green thumb. What that really means is that I kill plants. I don’t mean to or want to kill plants, but I do. Sometimes I forget to water them. Sometimes I over water them due to the guilt of forgetting to water them. Sometimes I lightly dust their leaves with a damp paper towel and talk to them in soothing murmurers, thereby killing them too.

Dracaena trifasciata, better known as the snake plant or mother-in-law’s tongue, is recommended for beginners by ye ole Wikipedia. In Australia it is considered a weed. The general consensus of the handful of plant and gardening sites I read is that even a brick could raise and grow this plant (my words, not theirs).  I simply need to give it water from time to time, that’s it. I am feeling good about this.

That leaves the cats. Chloe and Leia eyeballed it and sniffed it suspiciously before walking away and ignoring it. James however…

First he sniffed it and then looked at me. “Be good, James,” I said which prompted him to take a little nibble.

“No, James,” I said. He gave me a look, clearly annoyed by my interference.

Next he whapped one of the leaves, impressed with the way it sprung back and forth. “James!” I raised my voice.

He leapt off the chair and stalked out of the room. Sock Monkey raised his sunglasses in alarm and looked around, the book in his lap momentarily forgotten.

And while James has gone back to sleeping in his red chair since being spoke unto, he has not acknowledged the plant.

Perhaps there is hope for it yet.

About Shoes

I am an elementary school teacher, a former microbiologist, a mom to a herd of two boys, and a grilled cheese sandwich and beer connoisseur.
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10 Responses to James vs. the Plant

  1. Rivergirl says:

    I’m seriously hoping the rugs under those red chairs aren’t a long lost relative of the cat. It could explain his plant aggression..

  2. Mary Ann says:

    Good luck with your plant. I enjoyed meeting Sock Monkey too!

    • Shoes says:

      Thanks, I’ll need it! Sock Monkey has been a member of our family for awhile now. He randomly showed up in the living room months ago and moves from place to place every now and again. (I’m easily amused, apparently.) He had been reading the same John Grisham book for too long, so I eventually took it from him to read myself. Perhaps he needs a book more at his level. I am sure he enjoyed meeting you as well. 🙂

  3. Good luck with your plant! I managed to kill a cactus, so no more plants allowed in my flat 🙈

  4. Super cute! 🙂 Have I mentioned orange cats are my favorite? And, man, those white rugs look so deliciously fluffy I want to run my fingers through them. Then the cat. Then the rugs again. Best of luck with the plant! If it dies, absolutely no judgement from me. I’ll just nod my head like, yep, it was only a matter of time. Or perhaps I’m just speaking as though it was my plant.

  5. Shoes says:

    We are rather partial to James, he does have a huge personality but the orange fur is a bonus as well. I’ve never had a marmalade cat before him. The rugs (Amazon) are as fluffy as they look, maybe even more so. I was worried about them as they are white and we have three black animals, but I use the non-rotor furniture attachment on the vacuum and they clean and fluff right up! The are suppose to be machine washable, but I am a bit nervous to try that. I have the plant on a once a week watering schedule and so far so good. Fingers crossed! 🤞

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