Wednesday, April 15, 2009

We Are the Rock Stars! by Carol King

Here we are, dear gardeners, cruising along in our own little nerdy world, quietly gardening, getting dirty, sunburned, scabby, and muddy. Then our First Lady Michelle Obama puts a kitchen garden on the White House lawn, calling attention to our endeavors and EVERYONE wants a piece of us. Now don’t get me wrong; I am pleased that the First Lady is bringing a garden to the White House lawn. I love this project; it is a very appropriate, wonderful thing to do. But now we are ROCK STARS and the pressure is on. The expectation is that we have to look the part and that part has changed with this rock star status.

Reporters went to great lengths to photo her gardening attire and discuss her gardening outfits. “The first lady wore a blue t-shirt covered by a red windbreaker, black pants (with dirt!) and black velcro sneakers. Her hair was tied back in a loose bun” gushed the news report. They discussed the designer belt she wore around her waist and her low heeled boots. (High heels in the garden? Please.) She did have on cute clothes, looked very well put together and while she was dirty and actually working, I did not see a single piece of twine holding her pants up and I believe that she even had on make up!

My garden attire, on the other hand, is something like this: large, man’s, long sleeved white dress shirt from the thrift shop on 50% off day, paired with old shorts or pedal pushers that are held up with a safety pin or twine because the zipper is broken and the buttons are gone. I top off this outfit with one of a collection of straw cowboy hats that I got several years ago when some movie suddenly made them popular and I found them half priced at the overstock store. My look is complete with a pair of garden clogs often worn with socks. Mrs. Obama does not look like this.

So you see, dear gardener, it’s all over for us. As Rock Stars, we now have a responsibility to look the part. No more Oskosh overalls making our hips look too wide; no more lame baseball caps; throw out those rubber boots that used to be your son’s. Our First Lady has raised the bar! I don’t know about you, but I am headed to the Smith and Hawken Designer Garden Togs Outlet Store. I hear the paparazzi circling overhead, and I see a telephoto lens between the garden gates.