I feel sorry for the cheese.
“I think it’s called plight,” he explained in his declamatory, grating drone, orating to me and the Cute Engineer about something or other that had turned a few leaves of the tomato plants yellow. “I read about it. I work for a guy around the corner and all his tomato plants are green. You see that later in the summer but they should all be green. He’s a house down from the corner. No, two houses. No, it’s the one house.” David, like too many people in my life story, is incapable of noticing when other people’s eyes are glazing over. His teeth go off in random directions and he looks at everybody as if he is sure they are better off than he is and don’t deserve to be.
“So I mailed away for something that supposed to stop it. It’s some kind of little bug? It’s called plight. I think that’s what it’s called. I mailed away for this stuff. It’s organic. I wouldn’t put anything on that isn’t organic. I mean if someone says it’s ninety percent organic, who knows what’s in that other ten per cent.”
I had inveigled the Engineer outdoors to help me turn back the tide of wild grape vines and some sort of tall grassy thing that gets woody if you let it grow too high, which annually endeavor to choke out the east end of my garden, already excessively profuse with rudbekia and some sort of head-lolling millefiori kind of spreading pale purple plant that no one can identify.
“I get it concentrated cause you can get six gallons if you mix up the concentrate. If you don’t get it concentrated it’s just gone as soon as you start using it.”
I know I uttered something approving, or encouraging, or anyway vaguely civil.
“It’s expensive. I paid forty-four dollars.”
David gets about a third of my back yard to garden in for free, to say nothing of watering it on my bill, and I skim off a few tomatoes, lettuces and bell peppers every summer, so what he pays for garden supplies is down to him. I let him go on.
I don’t know how he got onto the subject of rice. “You know Lisa [Mrs. David] used to only like white rice. Now she likes the brown rice. I always eat brown rice. You know they say white rice gives you diabetes? But I always eat brown rice. I eat a bowl every day. I get almost all my energy from brown rice.”
I could see the Engineer was on the verge of flinging off his clothing and running in random circles around the yard. “Holy cow! I forgot! David! Thanks for reminding me, I was going to put some rice on for dinner!!!”
As I fled indoors he was still explaining “I think it’s called plight.”
I have no idea what the hell he was talking about, but it comforts me that he probably doesn’t, either.