Human Flower Project
Wednesday, March 14, 2012
Garden Inspiration: Yin or Yang
Allen Bush, just back from a major conference of plantsmen, remembers two impossibilities and several mentors that sealed his gardening fate.
Photo: Jelitto Seed
By Allen Bush
I’d barely shoved-off from the hotel curbside when the cab driver asked abruptly, “What’s your name?” I hadn’t swept the sleep from my eyes but I knew where this was going. It’s not commonplace anymore, but the Bush on my nametag still draws the occasional question: “Are you related to George Bush?” (I always feel like I’m being lobbed a soft one. )
“He’s my father.”
My father’s name was George. When Bush the elder was President, besotted bar flies would occasionally get the fool idea to call the commander in chief in the middle of the night. My father was the only George Bush listed in the Louisville directory. (It must have been much too complicated to call Washington-D.C. directory assistance in the wee hours to get the White House switchboard.) Dad hung-up three or four times before he had his name taken out of the phone book. Listening to a slurred Pledge of Allegiance at 2:00 a.m was not his patriotic duty.
Moses, the Nigerian cab driver, talked non-stop for 15 minutes from downtown all the way up North Charles Street to the Sheppard Pratt Conference Center. I got an earful about politicians (none were to be trusted) and the Bushes. I wanted only a little quiet.