This phase is my least favorite.
Deadheading phase number 1 took place in my high school days. Back when I used to like to draw dancing bears, wear tie dye and rock out to some Uncle John’s Band. The peak of my deadheading days was probably along about junior year when my then boyfriend and I went to see the Dead play at the Knick in Albany, NY. (It’s since been renamed something banal like Pepsi Arena or something, but it will always be “The Knick” to me). That was several years before Jerry died and we were young and fun and loved all things hippie. I was also crazy insecure back then because I also was heavy into The Cure and Depeche Mode and I loved New Wave Punk, and I thought I couldn’t possible do both, that I had to pick one place to fit into and couldn’t be a “multi – genre” teen. How glad am I that I have grown up and realized I can like all sorts of different things that don’t fit together, and that’s OK. I can wear a chic designer piece of clothing along with something old and vintage. I can make a mixed cd with some Dead, The B52’s, some great 80’s Brit rock and some Hindi music. Why not?
My second phase of deadheading was my favorite. That was in my bus driving days in college. Deadheading was when you had no passengers on board and you got to drive off route to whatever your destination was. Not that deadheading specifically was my favorite; the bus driving itself was. I never thought I could learn to drive a transit bus. I didn’t even like big cars let alone a 35 foot long passenger vehicle. Navigating those badboys around the University was some of the best times I’ve had, and I still feel a great sense of accomplishment for having done it. And it really proved even more that I could be more than one thing. I can be feminine and frilly and still love the smell of diesel at 4 in the morning.
Which brings me to the current deadheading phase. The one I don’t like. Hint: it involves petunias and geraniums. Getting outside every day to pick the dead flowers off is one big pain in my butt. I don’t so much mind the watering, because when it’s 800 degrees outside (like today), I can always water myself, too. But the deadheading requires standing in one spot reaching over my head picking out the dead stuff from the hanging baskets. Last year it was a real pain, because I was pregnant with Oona and largely having to stay off my feet. This year it’s not as bad, except that now I am one handed and there’s a 20 lb baby hanging off of me the whole time. But, at least my efforts are rewarded with nice full plants. And who can argue with that?