A bouquet of red roses sat on my doorstep. But all my friends know I don’t like roses, and any admirer, secret or otherwise, would have gleaned my hatred for the thorny, petaled plant from just about anywhere, and wouldn’t have left such a display at my door. This left two possible scenarios:

  1. The roses were delivered to the wrong address.
  2. The roses are not roses but a bomb, which will set off if moved, sent by secret spies from the agency down the street, who I know have been studying my movements as I attend yoga and consult the dog psychic.

I set down my purse and dove to the deck, raising my nose but just one eyebrow, as I studied the vase filled with potentially fatal flowers. I inched forward on my elbows, my slacks catching on a loose nail, and squinted at the card amongst the thorns. It read “Sam” which could either mean:

  1. Samantha, who is not me, and thus the delivery man sent the flowers to the incorrect address, and has caused the rip in my slacks thanks to the nail. Maybe he even raised the nail from the deck, just to screw with me. Had he left a screw, at least it would’ve been useful. I keep odd hardware around. It’s always good to be prepared. OR
  2. Sam is actually SAM for SURFACE TO AIR MISSLE. This would be the smallest known surface to air missile on the market, and how brilliant to camouflage it in a vase of red roses. Your love sends me to the sky where it strikes BOOM. Poetic.

Once I was close enough to the bouquet of roses and explosives, I spread the leaves to peer inside the vase. From my first inspection no bombs were visible. There were no signs of propellant, gun powder, C4, or even a firecracker. Inside the vase was a clear substance I assumed to be water, that delectable combination of hydrogen and oxygen some people thought we all had to have an arbitrary 8 glasses a day of, though no one ever defined the measurements of a “glass” and if the measurements depended on our own physical size. Which made me believe it was all utter and complete crap.

Seeing how the vase appeared to be nothing more than water and the thorny plant that offended me by its very existence, I wondered about this Sam individual, and why I was unaware of their presence in my neighborhood. Who was this Sam? Was it of the female persuasion, or did it have precisely one Y chromosome? Each night was spent at my front window, watching between the blinds the ongoings of my neighborhood, since no one else seemed up to the task of Neighborhood Welfare. Thus far I’d not encountered anyone going by the moniker “Sam,” certainly no one near me. I’d made it a regular task to go to each of my neighbors and knock on their doors exactly five times, despite the presence of a door bell. I did this for two reasons:

  1. I do not trust the doorbell for the sound of it offends me.
  2. Knocking five times lets the neighbors know it is me.

I’ve found after knocking five times each Thursday that my neighbors were always busy and couldn’t talk with me. I find this a curious thing, as usually nothing but routine house-cleaning and television-watching occurs on Thursday evenings. But since I’ve knocked each week, my neighbors have had more pressing appointments. I’m beginning to think they’re under-appreciative of my diligence to keep our neighborhood safe. I will make it my mission  this week to find out more about Sam, why he/she/it had roses delivered to me, and if anyone is aware that Mrs. Dillaryshire next door has been having an affair with another woman.



Disclaimer for people who take things literally: Sissy Jenkins is a fictional character of my creation, but is based on that crazy neighbor we all seem to have had or encountered. All of her stories are totally fake, and anyone believing these observations are real should go see a head-doctor. Stat.