Ruby Bayan is a freelance writer who likes to share her simple joys.

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Boston Fern's Lament
by Ruby Bayan

'Boston Fern' by Ruby Bayan Another workday is over. As the janitor leaves and closes the door of the main office, a familiar groan is heard from the far end of the row of cubicles. A sigh, then a rustle of leaves. Boston Fern sitting on top of a filing cabinet starts to rant again.

"Nobody understands me."

Not a bit startled, Tiffany Bromeliad, sits comfortably at the edge of the side table next to the window. She tries to sympathize. "I see you had another long day, Fern," she says.

Tiffany stretches her shiny long leaves and wiggles her fire red cone of flowers as though relieving a neck cramp. She had just been moved to the window area after a couple of weeks blooming on the visitors' couch side table.

Fern throws his fronds about and raises his voice, "How come you get the window seat again? You were basking there just less than a month ago! I've been sitting on top of this metal monstrosity for more than ten weeks!"

"Oh, chill, Boston," Tiffany snaps back. "You're such a whiner. Algerian Ivy at the other cubicle has been cramped in a bookshelf for ages! Do we hear him complain?"

"Alger is a masochist. He doesn't care if he gets squeezed by all those sticky plastic binders! I suspect he extends his tendrils to reach the ceiling lights when nobody's looking," Boston grumbles incessantly.

"I can't live like this, Tiffany, you have to help me. I need more light. It's so dark and dreary up here. I've been rotting here forever! I can't stand it anymore! I need a rotation!"

"Calm down, Boston! Why don't you shed a few fronds? Mr. Smith will notice your aggravation and maybe put you in a hanger beside me here by the window."

"I wish. I've been yellowing and thinning and drooping and what did our Mr. Smith do? He watered me all soggy and force fed me with a double-dose of fertilizer! I need light!"

Tiffany gives up and turns away. She gently folds her leaves and tucks her blossoms in to call it a night. Boston continues to lament.

A few hours later, a loud crash echoes in the workplace. Tiffany jumps to see what caused the racket. Boston Fern had managed to inch his way to the edge of the filing cabinet and plunge to the floor. He had committed suicide.

Tiffany tries to revive Boston, but all she could do was hold his leaf tips as he utters his dying words, "I can see the light! I... must... go to the light." Boston Fern passes away.

Lesson of the story: A fern in need needs a friend indeed.

[First published by]

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