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You Never Know Who Will Walk Into Your Community Garden

  • Subject: [cg] You Never Know Who Will Walk Into Your Community Garden
  • From: adam36055@aol.com
  • Date: Wed, 21 Dec 2005 13:24:08 -0500

Here's a spring story for you - 
About thirty years ago, pre-marriage, kid, when I had lotsa hair, and no beard, I was digging in the Liz Christy Garden, during the spring. There was soil then, and it wasn't the dump it had been. 
So, I'm digging with the pitchfork, and this big guy in a dressing gown starts to talk to me. Understand that it's the Bowery and we had alot of unusually dressed guys walking around. He says, 
"Hey kid, you gonna grow somethin' dere?" 
Sez me: " Yeah, I'm gonna grow tomatoes. If they grow good, I'll give ya one."
Sez the guy in the bathrobe:, "My faddah usta grow tomatoes inna old country." 
Sez me," You gotta like tomatoes,". My guy shuffles off and two cars, follow him. This suit comes out of one car and asks me, " You know this guy?" 
I say, "Who do I know?" 

The guy in the suit who shows me a badge," The guy in the dressing gown," 
"Oh, everybody around here wears dressing gowns, me too - but I left mine home today. One just came up to me today, and instead of grabbing my butt asked me if I liked tomatoes."
The badge and suit says," So what did you say?"
I sez," I told him I liked tomatoes, you like tomatoes officer?" 
The suit and badge told me to go "F" myself, in those politically incorrect days. I said, while digging, " I guess you can dress 'em up...." 
Two weeks later, a big guy comes up to the corner and sez," These are from..." and he rubs his chin. He had a case of two dozen tomato seedlings in a box. 
I say, "Please thank him for the garden.Tell him to come by later when they are grown" And I rub my chin. I didn't see him later in the season, but later that fall, I saw him in his bathrobe and told him that the tomatoes were good. He was acting crazy, but he winked at me, so I knew he heard. 
I read in the papers yesterday that Anthony "Chin" Gigante, whom I knew as someone who loved tomatoes, and ran the Genovese family in his spare time died in a Federal Pen. You never know who is going to walk into your community garden and want to talk about tomatoes.
Adam Honigman

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