The Tennessee State Library and Archives Tree

So, yes, in a move that gets funnier to me by the minute, we have planted another tree in the yard and named it the unofficial Tennessee State Library and Archives tree.

As you recall, we have some water issues by the driveway. In an effort to stem the tide, so to speak, we’ve planted a weeping willow–the unofficial, unsanctioned, heretofore even unbeknownst to them, Tennessee State Library and Archives tree.

They tell you, when you plant a tree, to get a muddy slurry at the bottom of the hole so that you don’t get any air pockets under the root ball. but by the time Dad and I had dug down the depth of the root ball, water was already seeping in to the bottom of the hole. So, not only was there no need to add water to the hole, we had proof positive that a willow would thrive in that part of the yard.

In bad news, all the water is really, really stressing my holly, which is turning yellow and dumping leaves like there’s no tomorrow. I hope it doesn’t die.

The parents have gone off to North Carolina to try to mitigate the damage of my sister-in-law being thrown out of her house on my nephew. When they announced that plan, my brother said, and I am not even kidding, “Yeah, that’s a good idea. That’s what I would do.”

I honestly could not believe it. I still can’t.

Maybe it’s just that I’m too far removed from some of this nonsense and, if I were in it every day, I could hear stuff like that without really hearing it, but it… I don’t know. It’s hard to explain. I love my brother and I feel very grateful that we’ve been able to overcome some of our shit and enjoy our time together, but stuff like that makes me feel very distant from him. I guess that’s the easiest way to say it. It makes him unrecognizable to me at some level.

“That’s what I would do.”

Then why haven’t you?

The subject of my parents moving to Georgia came up again and this time I was even more forthright and I said, “I will not nag about this, but I just want to say it and have it heard–please move near someone who will take you to the doctor if you get to the point where you cannot take yourselves.”

And my dad said, “Well, we haven’t moved to Georgia yet.”

So, I don’t know. They make me crazy and so mad and I get completely fed up with both of their nonsense.

But my brother can see what needs to be done to help his son and he will not do it, even as he claims that that is what he would do. I am terrified of him being the one who has to be the one who needs to see what needs to be done for our parents.

We went to church yesterday and it ended up great. I hate church and the men in my family hate cantatas. There was a cantata! So, through the whole painful “God is my needy, insecure boyfriend” songfest, I just smiled, knowing that the people who insisted upon going to church were just as unhappy as me.

And then they had an altar call! At a Methodist church! What the fuck do Methodists do at the front of a church during an altar call? Exchange casserole recipes? Take a tiny collection? Gossip? Decide who’s hosting Methodist Men next Sunday?

I don’t know, but it cracked me up.

Everyone knows a true Methodist sticks as close to the back of the church as possible. A true Methodist altar call would have to happen in the back of the church. It’s just unseemly for a Methodist to go to the front of the church for any reason other than being the minister, liturgist, acolytes, or choir. Even the ushers approach the front of the church hesitantly and then flee as soon as they can after the offering is handed to the minister.

Some of you southern Methodists are going to have to fill me in on whether this ever works successfully or whether it just ends up encouraging folks who eventually become Baptist.

7 thoughts on “The Tennessee State Library and Archives Tree

  1. You mean Methodists don’t have to wait through at least 3 verses of that “Lamb of God” song just in case someone wants everyone to wonder about them by going up front? And the ‘alter call’ at my Grandma’s funeral still irks me.

    And the whole ‘needy and insecure’ part is why I ultimately parted from Christianity. If my deity isn’t someone I’d associate with in real life, why exactly am I dealing with them?

  2. What the fuck do Methodists do at the front of a church during an altar call? Exchange casserole recipes?




    Line. of. the. day.

  3. So, since your dad found out my family’s religious persuation there have been all these Methodists v. Lutheran jokes made when you were at home and I would call your house or when they were at school. I just realized they’re pretty much about the same based on your description.

    Except that I still maintain Lutherans are more reserved. Somehow.

    Also, I think the tree’s new name is awesome.

  4. But is the tree the Official TN State Library and Archives Tree, or is its name TN State Library and Archives? Because if that’s its name it’s very cool, but to be the Official Tree, not so much, I think.

  5. Ha, yes, it’s ridiculous and hilarious. But the tree’s name is The Tennessee State Library and Archives. It is not a tree in some way belonging to the TSLA.

    Because, after all, the TSLA is run by Tre Hargett and I think we know how he feels about tree products–he’d have the TSLA tree converted to some kind of electronic tree that left no paper trail as soon as he could.

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