Stupidity and the Gardener Part 1

Every year about this time, my lone walnut tree erupts with nuts. If you’re a walnut fan and you’ve never had fresh walnuts, ’tis a pity. Just ask my walnut addicted, shell crunching dogs or the thieving, greedy crows (why did God create crows? That question keeps me awake many a night).

I struck a really fair deal with the dogs: walnuts on ground level are theirs. Then I made an equally magnanimous deal with the gosh darn crows: all walnuts at sky level are theirs for the taking. That means the remainder are for me, and my non-idiotic family, friends and neighbors, right?  Not exactly.

My gardener, Eddie, is wonderful, and no, he is not a stuper (short for an exasperatingly stupid person). But his brother, Dumb Dom, is. When Eddie is too busy to do my gardening, he sends Dom and an apprentice.

I happened to be home during one of Dom’s gardening days. I peered out the window and saw, as usual, the gardener’s apprentice toiling over the lawn mower, the weeds and the rake, while Dom played around with a pair of shears, snapping them open and shut at imaginary flies.

I left the window and returned ten minutes later to view Dom beneath the beloved walnut tree, arms busily reaching upward and picking, while his pant pockets bulged with nuts… from the tree.  Then he proceeded to tuck in his shirt and drop walnuts down his neck into his newly formed bag/shirt.

I rapped on the window until he turned toward me. Then I waved, just to let him know I was on to him and hopefully firmly plant the guilt seed. Instead, Dom threw me a wildly dirty look for interrupting him and continued picking. Not to be outdone, I raced outside.

“Mind leaving some for me? I like them too, you know,” I stated fiercely, waving the shovel I held in one hand around threateningly.

Dom grumbled and sauntered away, walnuts spilling from all sides, which my dogs rapidly proceeded to devour. By the way, Dom does not speak English and has been in this country only a short time. Perhaps where he comes from, picking other people’s fruit and nuts is a sign of friendliness and good will. Then again, I hear hands are cut off for less, in some places.

Typically, I pick the fruit and nuts from my trees and pass them out. Even Dom has gotten his own bag of plums and apples. But what to do with stupers who believe mi casa es su casa? What’s yours is mine? I tried heading him off at the pass by giving him his share. You saw where that went. I really wasn’t up to frisking his 6’4″ frame; even in my four inch stilettos, I’m still only 5’11”.

The next time Dom showed up for his so called gardening job, I was ready. I remembered some advice once offered by French Royal and well known stuper, Marie Antoinette, a short time before she was beheaded, “Let them eat cake.” True, such advice backfired for her, but I knew it work on Dom.  Now, at harvest time, I always leave a large piece of cake or three for Dom. That way he’s too busy eating when he arrives and too full for picking by the time he leaves, I give him his share, and I get to keep the rest of the nuts.

Keep thinking.


7 Responses to “Stupidity and the Gardener Part 1”

  1. Mad Woman says:

    Hahah! Ingenious idea! I doubt I would have thought of filling him up. What nerve he has to just come and take your stuff. I’m kind of in awe!

  2. Alison T says:

    Dear dear. That’s blatant theft! And you are right: in some countries he would have his hands cut off. ‘Scrumping’ (theft of fruit) used to be a serious problem in the UK when children used to think it great larks to nick others’ fruit. Now, they nick beer from the off license…I think I’d rather they stole my apples to be honest with you!

  3. omawarisan says:

    I know this isn’t the point, but a crow can crack a walnut? Damn, I’m a little shook up by that.

    Pre-planning for scheduled stupers…spectacular.

  4. Elaine says:

    I must admit I have never had fresh walnuts picked right off a tree. Now I’m quite curious how these differ in taste from the ones I buy at the grocery store? Too bad I can’t pop over and ask ever so politely for a handful of your fresh walnuts.

  5. Ferd says:

    Why do you have to have him back?
    Can’t he be exwalnuticated?

  6. Jenny says:

    I am still agape over Dom’s egregious behavior but even more so at your aplomb in handling it, Keli! I would have sent him packing, nutless.

  7. Keli says:

    Mad Woman:
    I had to sidetrack him and I knew the quickest route was through his stomach.
    Agreed! It’s not a true crime which requires some creativity, which I hope I managed.
    You bet they can, quite adeptly! I’ve found many a walnut shell on the ground (they do not clean up after themselves, unlike my well trained dogs) and the shell had a hole big enough for that bill to fit thru and suck the nut meat up. Disgusting, really.
    I would love to give you some walnuts, my dear. It is too bad you can’t pop on over. As it is, I am currently all out, thanks to the many takers.
    I would love to have him exwalnuticated! Is that performed by a pope? A botanist, perhaps? I’ll have to Google that.
    If I thought I could have sent him packing, I would have. It’s just that his bro is so pleasant, I didn’t have the heart to complain. Perhaps I am a stuper…

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