Sunday, April 09, 2006

Open Letter

To the selfish jerk who stole tulips from my flower bed:

Yesterday there were tulips in my parking strip. They were just ready to open, their orange-red noses poking out of the green. Today there are a bunch of severed stems. You came along and cut my flowers.

What made you think that the flowers were a gift made only for you? There was no sign, "free, please take." If I want to give something away, I put up that sign. But I did NOT put up a sign, because I didn't want you to take my flowers. I wanted them to bloom in my garden, to enjoy them and to let others enjoy them. Now only you get to enjoy them.

Why would you steal my tulips? Did you need a gift for your lover, but you were too poor to buy flowers? Did you feel a spontaneous urge to fill your home with beautiful spring blooms, but were too cheap to shell out for them? Were you feeling blue, and needing something bright?

And why MY flowers? Several of the houses on this block have lovely tulips growing in their yards. Last year my neighbor generously told me to come cut tulips from her yard. They were in bloom and she told me she wanted to share the bounty while it lasted. I am sure if you had knocked on her door she'd have graciously offer you some as well. But instead you stole my flowers. The ones I picked out at a visit to the tulip farm in Wilsonville, after wandering the entire place looking at all the colors, sizes and shapes. The ones I planted when I was pregnant and thinking about how they'd bloom in the spring, just before my daughter was to arrive. The ones I looked forward to during the long, dark days of winter.

Thanks for robbing me of one of the pleasures of the garden - of working hard to make things grow, not just for myself, but for my neighbors and people walking by.

But I am confident you'll be tracked down. I put my 5 year old neighbor Ben on the case. He had a lot of good suggestions for catching you, which I won't detail here so that you aren't tipped off. I will say that the banana on the sidewalk, that was Ben's doing.


  1. In times of duress, it's good to have someone like Ben on your side.

    Good luck catching the perp. So sorry to hear about your tulips.

  2. oh, no. That truly sucks.

    Any chance it was the wind? Many of the tulips outside my office building were shorn off by the wind (I know no one cut them) and they look a lot like your picture.

    Just a thought. I don't know if it makes you feel any better, though.

  3. that sucks! i am all hormonal and emothinal and tired this morning and that almost made me cry! what a jerk. i hope ben catches the thief and makes him sorry!!!

  4. I can't believe that someone would actually do that! Grr! I'd be upset, too - I spent a lot of time picking out the bulbs I planted in my flowerbeds as well. I hope that your pint-size sleuth gets to the bottom of this :)

  5. are you sure it wasn't a rabbit? were the tulips cut or bitten? tulips are my fav, i'd be mad too, either way.

  6. Not wind, not a rabbit. If it had been either of those, I'd have seen other tulips on the block similarly affected. No one else's were broken/cut. The stems were cut at a uniform height from the ground, and some leaves got a bit slashed in the process. (I have never seen rabbits in my neck of the non-woods. Racoons and possums, yes, but not rabbits.)

    My neighbor (who has a beautiful garden) says she's had plants taken from her back area (their property goes all the way through the block to the next street). She even caught a woman uprooting some plants. When confronted, the woman said "oh, I'm just taking a few starts." Pretty nervy.

  7. That kind of sucks. It was probably some kids-they don't always appreciate people's hard work in the garden :(

  8. People have absolutely NO shame. And not that I've stolen flowers before, but wouldn't take just a few so not to make it look obvious.

    A dumb flower thief...

  9. It's true, the neighborhood *is* overrun with tulip-crazed guttersnipes. Ben came up with several more ingenious traps today, however, so I'm confident that the evil-doers will soon come to curse our name. I can almost hear the sound of their armor clattering upon them.

  10. It is my current mission to convince my daughter that the flowers in other people's yards are there for 'visiting'... I sure hope Ben doesn't end up busting a sweet if meddlesome 19th month old like mine.

  11. It sounds like Ben is your Encyclopedia Brown out to solve the case. I know my daughter loves to snag flowers while we are not looking. However, the precise cutting technique that seems to have been used was most likely not done by the hand of our toddler.