I’m an avid gardener. I love digging around in the dirt and planting things. Notice, I left out making things grow or the fact that I have dirt and germ issues which make the actual digging in the dirt an issue. Also, did I mention, I’m literally afraid of my own shadow so anything that crawls or flies sends me running in the house. But other than that, I love to garden.We recently had a lot of rain and my little patch of the earth doesn’t get a ton of sun. It gets just enough so a few plants can grow and I can call myself a gardener. I take pride in my little patch of earth, it’s my own Tara. I trim the bushes, I pull the weeds, and I’ll even lay the mulch. Let’s just leave out the fact that while I’m doing this I’m wearing bright blue surgical gloves covered by gardening gloves because it would be weird if I just wore the surgical gloves. I’ve found that double bagging it, is the only way my neuroses will let me even attempt gardening.
On this particular day, I was behind in my yard upkeep. We had had a few days of rain and then some weird up and down temperatures. Frankly, I used the whole escapade as an excuse to stay in the house. When I finally did emerge, that was when I saw it, a penis in my garden. I yelled WTF a little too loudly but thankfully no one was around to hear the string of profanities that came out of my mouth. There were three of them, poking their nasty little heads up through the mulch. Flies swarmed around the gooey black substance that made up the head. It was and is disgusting. I let the first three-run their course. The boys got a kick out of them and I thought the worst was over.
I was wrong.
About a week later, I opened my front door and was taken aback by what I saw. I immediately texted my husband, “Our yard is full of dicks.” He laughed and responded with, “Tug on them, they’ll come out.”
I grabbed my blue gloves, a trash bag, and proceeded to my front yard with caution. I sized up the situation, I would have to brave all of my triggers at once to get the job done. Bugs (check), dirt (check), unspeakable nastiness (double check). Phrases I haven’t used since high school came to mind like, “I skeeve.” I circled the penis mushroom a few times before I finally worked up the courage to grab the first one. It broke. It was spongy, the tip was moist and covered with flies. I threw up in my mouth a little bit. Then I went to get my mini trowel to dig up what broke off. I was not prepared for what came next. NOTHING could have prepared for me what came next, it was that traumatic.
I pushed the trowel deep into the dirt, breaking away everything from around the base of the mushroom. Then I lifted. Why did I lift it up? Why God? Why????
IT HAD BALLS!
It had a nut sack and it was hairy. It had all these little fibers coming off of it that looked like peach fuzz. I was mentally unprepared for that. I dry heaved. I had finally found what my threshold was of not being able to deal. It wasn’t cleaning the mound of reddish brown vomit from my son’s bed nor was it the time when he had explosive diarrhea and got shit all over the walls. Nope, it was the penis patch I had growing in my front yard. That was the final straw, the nail in my neurotic coffin.
I broke that day.
I have since retreated to my house. I have given up on outdoor gardening and have turned my horticultural intentions upon growing garlic on my window sill and propagating spider plants. I want no parts of the outdoors, its penises or its balls.