So there we were, capping off “Hockey Day In America” with an episode of Rockford Files instead of the Caps/Rangers game. And the episode was the second of a two-parter featuring a goofy elderly dude who’s being cheated convolutedly out of his farm — “The Birds, The Bees, And T.T. Flowers”. We’d hit up the first half last week, but this in this half the dude, in a stand-off with an LAPD SWAT team at his homestead, started waxing poetic about his beloved trees. Trees he’d listened to on farmy evenings, making their tree music rustling in the wind. Trees he had planted, nurtured, staked against the wind, and taught to sing. The dude was acting pretty certifiable, but as people who are very married to their beloved garden and orchard, we kind of understood where he was coming from. In the seven years we’ve been at Stately IPB Manor we’ve committed tons of blood, sweat, and tears to bettering the land; we’ve put in a big vegetable garden, planted berry canes and bushes and grapevines, and weaned over a dozen little fruit trees that are now starting to show their thanks by bearing fruit. We’d probably dig in against a SWAT team, too, if confronted with losing our beloved land.
But as people who were deep into a second bottle of wine, we started to panic — we’ve never taught our trees how to sing. Well. Mark our words — some time after the sun comes up tomorrow, when we’re finally awake and have had some aspirin, we’ll be out front, coaching our little orchard. With this ditty:
Because when you’re a farmer who drinks too much, you’re a farmer who takes teaching your trees how to sing seriously.