I’m Done with You, Martha Stewart! Lori Thatcher

          So long, Martha,

            This time I really mean it! I can’t fathom why our affair endured as long as it did. Every one of my recent resolutions has been about simplifying my life and paring down my possessions. The minimalist lifestyle has lured me away, darlin’. I’m trying to be gentle, but I need to tell you I have no room in my life for you.

I know. I know. You have good reasons for not believing me. Every time you show up, I cave in, despite my resolutions. The painted pine cone turkey, quilted jack-o-lantern, or paper-doily valentine leaves my fingers twitching and me desperate to take a trip to Hobby Lobby.

For God’s sake, Martha, I live in a 280 sq ft motor home. Where do I have room for a collection of china tea cups, cross-stitched wall hangings, or a moss garden?

I believe it when I say enough is enough, but then somehow I convince myself that the perfect little moss garden will, actually, fit perfectly, which means acquiring stuff I don’t need, like pots, drip trays, soil mixtures, drainage pebbles, tiny little pine trees, and of course, the moss.

I re-created a forest scene, a miniature of one onMt.DesertIslandinMaine—in your honor. I’m sure you would have been proud, if you ever cared enough to come see it.

You recommended a partially shaded place, so I put it on the dash. Of course, it didn’t look as elegant as the one perched on a marble table in your stone-floored atrium, but it was kinda’ pretty.

Unfortunately, my dashboard is my foyer, my mud room, and my staging area. Anything that’s on the way in or out ends up on the dash.

The poor little garden was crowded and assaulted by my gym bag; stacks of outgoing mail; packages; newspapers and recycle containers; and plastic bags filled with purchases my minimalist self is returning.

Surrounded by such everyday wreckage, the garden seemed to shrink and lose what splendor it had and, frankly, it was in the way.

I might have neglected the required several-times-a-day misting or left something that blocked the light or maybe even tipped the pot over, but I was still disappointed when the moss browned and withered away. I had invested so much time and money into it and now it was just dead vegetation. Maybe it’s being petty, but I blame it on you, Martha.

Don’t be upset; you must have noticed the signs. I quit ripping out articles and filing them in plastic sleeves and started giving away your magazine without saving a single piece, and last Christmas, I put off purchasing the glue gun I needed to make the rustic acorn wreath until Christmas was over. And then I didn’t bother.

So, when I got your letter in the mail today, I knew I had to finally sever our relationship—totally. It made it easier for me to do when your special offer had an asterisk near the price and “*plus $4 shipping charge.”. That just seems so unfair, Martha. After all these years?

I’m resolute; still I know I have to plan carefully. You’re a siren. Your call draws me in and your proposals will keep getting juicier and harder to resist. You know I’m easy. Last year I was beguiled just by the offer of a free companion subscription to Body and Soul magazine.  It’s hard to resist this type of low-down trick, even when I remind myself that you don’t really care about me, Martha.

So, I vow to not even open your letters! They’ll go right in the trash—out of sight will mean out of mind. I can’t even trust myself to recycle the paper.

Luckily you never write me post cards. That would be just too much for me to bear.

Sayonara Martha,          Your Ex-friend, Lori

9 comments on “I’m Done with You, Martha Stewart! Lori Thatcher

  1. Ha! I’m so not the Martha Stewart kind. However, I feel your pain about space constraints! We have 2 young kids – so four of us living in a 2 bedroom condo. There is no room for the kids toys or play space. So guess what, our entire house is the play room and you have to strategically step your way through our living room/dining area as legos are everywhere or Bits and pieces of barbie land. What you really want to avoid is those dang hot wheels. Those things really hurt. You can pick up, but while you concentrate on one area, the other is being tornadoed. So, I have to say NO to many incoming things, as well. “Hey, hon. Our neighbor is having a yardsale and she gave the kids this…” NO NO MORE THINGS. She’s clearing out her stuff and it’s all ending up here! NO NO NO!


    So, I feel ya!

    Feel free to visit my end of the blog-o-sphere!
    Lake Forest, CA

  2. This cracked me up! I too feel the lure of Martha and her cousins, Real Simple and Better Homes & Gardens with their oh so easy to the eye covers and promises. Better Homes & Gardens even went so far as to offer a year subscription for $5…how could I resist? This is a year that I have made vows (http://twyste.com/2012/01/02/365-days-to-simplicity-or-the-365-day-purging-or-the-quest-for-less/) and they have already been broken due to the crafty ways of which you speak. Darn you, Martha and crowd.

  3. Loved it Lori! 280 sq ft?! How do you do it. My little apt. is more than 3 times that size and still I have become hugely anal retentive trying to find a place for everything and everything in it’s place. I’m not going to ask Martha to come and help me get it figured out. I wouldn’t have room for her anyway!

  4. Very creative!! Love the voice and diction. Btw, James McBride put out a book The Color of Water in the 90s.
    Thank you so much for the amazing feedback on my blog and the follow I see you went through with. If you didn’t click “Follow by email” on my blog (which should do as you wanted), you can go to the READER, then the BLOGS/FOLLOW section and make sure the settings show email delivery of my posts. Let me know if you need help. You have a lot of ideas and feelings. Keep spinning them.

    From songwriter Michael Card’s POIEMA album:

    “The Bible tells us that we are God’s masterpieces (poiema in Greek); not only creatures, but His creations, His poems (Ephesians 2:10). We are living epistles (2 Cor 3:3). And so, our lives are meant to be listened to, because it is God who is speaking into and out of and through the symphony of the years, and the masterpiece of a lifetime.”

    A cliip of an earlier post of mine that happens to springboard off M Card:

    Even if you don’t believe we bear the image of God in a way plants and animals do not, you have to listen to what our communicative capacity says about personhood. We certainly can talk to ourself, but communication is at its most meaningful when it happens in a social context, with someone who gives us audience. The fact that we can speak is its own witness that we are born into a world where we can expect others to tune into us. Now, while animals have a language, our innate need to express takes us more deeply and richly into articulation of complex structure and substance and medium. Not only speech, but also art, allow us to mark our personal identity and broad humanness. I express myself through the writing and my music. Others paint, dance. God is known as the Living Word by which He spoke all things into life. We bear this divine image in the ways we speak our verbal, visual, physical art. In the artistic procreation, we do more than transmit energy, breathe, even learn. We birth something of beauty.

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