The Peony is a perennial plant that is native to Asia, Southern Europe, and Western North America, which makes the plant rather widespread throughout the world. I personally think that such a flower is not something to make light of. It’s actually quite a large looking flower, even though they grow in a bush and are often cramped right next to many flowers that look exactly like it. In fact, the peony has large, fluffy looking petals that spread out but are right on top of each other, but are easily distinguishable from the top-down view, which is not always common in voluminous flowers.
The Peony is rather bright, common color of the flower being a pink color that could definitely be noticed from across a room. The flower is actually huge, as it can be five feet tall and five feet in diameter, which means that two people laid out head to toe in a square formation could be able to perfectly fit the flower in the center of their square, which may not be exactly a perfect square.
It reminds me back of this one time during which some friends of mine were doing a team exercise. While the actual merits of the task may have been valiant and sane, completing the task appeared as anything but. They all were there and were told to form a square with themselves and then lift each other up, all the while they were still in that ludicrous looking square formation. It was odd.
My friends were on the soccer team. They absolutely loved it and were incredibly talented soccer players, as I assumed they always had been. Yet, when they got on that team together, their talents were not used only in an effort to outshine each other, they were used to make the team function as a team.
I was very impressed with the way they managed to become a well performing team. I did not know them or know if they were going to become friends or enemies. They all seemed like perfectly nice people and shared a common interest. It may not have been enough to assure anyone, myself included, that they would make a decent team, but it apparently was enough to prove that theory.
Anyhow, back to the idea of the exercise. At the beginning of every one of their practices, they would begin more conditioning. I was wondering why they always needed to. It seemed to be tedious at one point, since doing the same things day in and day out made no sense in principle to me. But they adored the exercises and warm-ups they did each and every practice. However, this idea of lifting each other up with feet on another’s back and hands on the floor or grass was unprecedented. When they heard of this task, it frazzled all of them. So when they told me about it, I had to ask them to show me what exactly they meant. They showed me. I was impressed at the ease with which they lifted themselves up.
I could have replaced one of them, and although it may have worked in theory, the reality would have proven my lack of skill in athletics. They would have patiently waited. I would be only dead weight.
There was this idea of dead weight and what it did for people that had stuck in my head for quite some time and resurfaced now and then. I was first told of this idea of people being dead weight by my dear friend Ricky, with whom I had learned many things that I would not have otherwise known and was likely to have not cared about, had he not been passionate in telling me. When he talked about the idea of dead weight and what it meant, I was surprised that it could be anything from the literal idea of weight to the more obscure idea of people simply not being able to contribute and being dead weight in that sense.
As I walked down the sidewalk and looked for somewhere to sit down and chill, it occurred to me that I wouldn’t know how I appeared to the rest of the town. They may have gotten somewhat used to me by now, but that didn’t mean that they were willing to let me become fully integrated into their world and into their society. I didn’t know if people here just sat about, waiting for things to happen or if they went out and just did exactly what they wanted to, how they wanted to, at the moment the thought occurred.
I am in favor of doing something as soon as possible, but this town may be more of a sleepy hollow and not want to actually be entirely proactive. There was no way to know. I didn’t see anyone lounging about. I heard some cheering and hollering off in the distance. I didn’t know what from.
There was a field nearby that I figured they would host events with hollering and cheering at. The notion of having people all scream their heads off at some people with some sort of athletic ability that did not prove anything more than God-given ability fine-tuned to be made into what the target market wants to view and pay for simply confused me. There was some logic to it. Yes, finding the way to make enough money to support oneself and a family, should there be one, made perfect sense. But the idea of doing it by screaming and shouting was not appealing in any way to me. Sports are great for other people.
I was considering going down to the field and finding out for myself what the game was. However, if I were to do that, I would then feel compelled to know much more about the game than just who is playing and who is currently winning. I would want to know all the rules and all other background information which I should have walked into the “stadium” having full knowledge of.
The prospect of there being something more in the world than just people who could play sports and be very athletic and become wildly successful off of that thrilled me. Yet, entertainment is a booming industry; always has been and always will be. People want to be able to enjoy a mindless activity. This is most likely why people don’t get all excited when they hear Pygmalion or As You Like It, but will jump for joy for a lengthy period of time when they hear a name such as Shawn White or Michael Jackson.
Of course, that’s simply because I don’t keep up with Pop Culture and related events. Yet, the idea of being able to become more aware about something I didn’t know appealed to me more than the idea disgusted me and made me want to run away as quickly to as far away as I could.
With that in mind, I did not go the field. With that in mind, I did not go to try and find someone who could explain the noise to me. With that in mind, I went to the house across the street from Denise and hoped that, just like Ricky’s, the door would be left open for me to explore around as I pleased.
I went to the house and the noise got quieter and softer. Sometimes, there were loud roars of cheer and praise and sometimes the roar was more of a “Hip, hip, hooray!” type of scream and, while it was not incredibly loud, it did manage to last for quite some time. Sometimes there were muffled sounds of names being screamed. For all I could hear, I did not pick out any distinct booing. There was only cheering in this town with an artist who used to be here but was now never spoken about.
I was hopeful that there would be more in the house than just emptiness and terror that no one wanted to be near or be seen near. Some people had houses with things inside of them that had been kept secret for a reason. I just didn’t know what the reason for this house being kept secret was.
The house looked large and was full of windows. The color was an eggshell white and paint was peeling off the trim and off the actual sides of the house as well. All I wanted to be certain of was if I could enter into the house and that no one would be inside of the house and question me about why I was in there or what I thought I was doing or even who I was. I was not willing to receive those questions.
So I approach the door and hope that it will push right open with my hand. It doesn’t seem to work, so then I choose my foot. I have never kicked a door open and I never thought I would have a chance to kick a door open, but the opportunity is knocking and I’d be a fool to not answer it.
The house belonged to an artist; that much was very apparent to me. There were paintings thrown about and various art supplies scattered all about. I saw paints and paintbrushes strewn about and then there were some works of art whose shredded remains were thrown around if they were not part of the paper-mache masterpiece that was in the making. I wanted to see the masterpiece when it became completed and promised myself that I would be there to witness the ending stage of that humble start.
As I was wandering up and down the stairs, I realized that I hadn’t looked into any of the rooms yet. The one with a “Do Not Disturb” sign seemed as good a room as any to begin with. I place my hand on the knob and consider if I should open the door. I begin to twist the doorknob.
And then there is a knock on the door. I could answer it, but that would be giving away my location and motive for sneaking into an abandoned house. I did not want to risk that. There were some really decent options laid out in front of me, and none of them tickled my fancy. I stood there, right in front of the door, in paralytic fear that prevented me from going further with my plan.