Martha in Margo
I cannot count the times friends have
said to me, Margo, you're Bath County's own Martha Stewart.
I cannot count them because, well, no
one has ever said it.
Perhaps in a moment of hopeful optimism,
a friend recently gave me a subscription to Martha Stewart Living magazine.
The cover screamed, Take it easy!
I have no trouble doing that.
It promoted A Laid-Back Beach
House. Had one of those already, although it looked nothing like the
cover photo. Perhaps it was the surfboards leaning up against the living
room wall. Surfboards in the living room? Really, Martha.
There's a special section entitled
Grilling 101. I could really use that. Step one for me: Buy a grill.
And then, there are Simple Crafts
Inspired by the Sea. I am not the least bit crafty. My mind boggled when
I scanned the article. It suggested making rice paper prints of fish. First
step: Cover your work surface. There goes the kitchen table. Brush
drawing ink onto a rubber fish form using a sponge brush. I have no
drawing ink. I cannot imagine where to locate a rubber fish form. As for the
sponge brush, well, there just might be one in the basement.
I guess what intrigues me most about
Martha's magazine is that she publishes her monthly calendar in it for all
I found Martha's June calendar quite
fascinating. It amazes me, really, just how similar we are. On June 16, for
example, Martha will take clothes to dry cleaner. I do that, too! On
Fathers Day, Martha will have friends over for lunch on the porch.
I will, too! Early in the month, Martha will Have vintage Edsel station
wagon serviced in Maine. I will bring my aging Honda to Clifford for an
oil change that very day! And on June 15, Martha must finish my column
for Living. Well dear, I must finish my own Living column that day.
This is uncanny!
I dare say Martha works harder than I
do. The poor darling will spend two days weeding vegetable beds. Shell be
planting sunflowers, sowing pumpkins, gourds and eggplant seeds. Shell be
edging grass along the roads and plant beds, and harvesting the last of the
greens from the cold frame, whatever that is. Something tells me, though,
that Martha will actually be overseeing a paid laborer to do much of this.
Heres something interesting. On June
23, its time for Friesians and miniature donkeys to get their annual
checkups. Martha immediately jets off to London that afternoon. That
Martha is certainly the multi-tasker. Were I jetting to London on an
afternoon, it would take me five days to get ready.
Martha is going to London, I surmise,
because her godson, Augustine Booth-Clibborn, will graduate from Pembroke
College, University of Cambridge. I have a sister born in August, who
attended a university, and has driven through a town called Pembroke. What a
Speaking of birthdays, it seems as if
there are none that slip past Martha. During June, she marks the calendar
for her niece Erica Scott; her godson, the aforementioned Augustine; her
property director, Mike Fiore (what exactly is a property director?); and
even Lawyer Larry Shires birthday. My oh my.
In between making fresh vegetable
juice using produce from the garden, and drinks and dinner with
friends (I do that, too!), Martha must find time to send horses to
East Hampton (its the place to summer in New England, dont you
know), and to continue fertilizing houseplants weekly with compost
I have houseplants! They consider
themselves fortunate if theyre watered weekly. To my knowledge, they do
not drink tea.
Martha has a curious entry on June 30:
Deadhead peonies. I never particularly liked the Grateful Dead, but I
have known many a diehard Deadhead in my life. I just cannot seem to make
the connection to peonies, somehow. Perhaps other pages in Marthas mag
will provide a clue.
Sadly, there are entries on Marthas
calendar that I will never make on mine. Prepare guest rooms on yacht
and put up net on tennis court, for instance. Take inventory of
wine collection. That, I can do in about 30 seconds.
The last thing Martha will do in June is
buy non-perishables in bulk, and store them in the basement. I would
have to drive 150 miles to buy anything in bulk. But, if I were to store it
in the basement, perhaps I might find that sponge brush.