Once again, I wait to do the year-end retrospective until after the year is actually over.
The husband: But you're supposed to do those at the end of the year, when you're looking back. The beginning of the year is supposed to be about looking forward.
Me: Well yeah, but how can I say they're the best posts of 2010 before 2010 is over? I mean, maybe I'll write a really kick-ass post for December 31.
Not that I did. I'm just saying I could, and then it wouldn't be on the list, and nobody would know about it, and even I would probably forget that I'd written it, but even if I remembered it and put it on the 2011 list, it wouldn't be the same because it's on the wrong year's list, and in the future somebody who's combing through the debris of our civilization after the apocalypse has happened will run across my blog on some server somewhere and they'll be all like, wow, this guy must have been brain-damaged or something: he's got a post on a "best of 2011" list that was written in 2010, no wonder the zombies got him, and I DO NOT WANT PEOPLE CALLING ME STUPID AFTER THE ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE BECAUSE I DIDN'T DELINEATE YEARS PROPERLY, OKAY?
The husband: Oh. [pause] Okay.
Last year I came up with sixteen favorite posts; this year, either I sucked more, or I had higher standards, 'cause I only wound up with twelve. (Actually, it's neither, I think: I was reasonably fond of most of the plant profiles I did this year, but I figure the main purpose of writing these lists is to call people's attention to posts they might have missed, and the profiles, though I work hard on them, already have links in the sidebar and get read regularly regardless. I did include my very favorite 2010 profile, but I didn't include all the profiles.)
So without further ado.
12. Pretty pictures: Paeonia cvv. (28 May 2010) I still don't necessarily like peonies all that well, but I really liked the way this particular photo turned out:
11. The One About Plant Theft (20 July 2010) Sometimes people will steal plants. Does this mean people are terrible? Yes. Yes it does.
10. Pretty pictures: Passiflora spp. (11 July 2010) This has very little to do with the pictures (though they're nice) and everything to do with me being proud that I managed to come up with an argument that Passiflora flowers are actually all about the TV show "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," instead of the crucifixion of Christ like everybody thinks.
9. Random plant event: Hoya lacunosa flowers (17 January 2010) Mostly me going off on the Garden Bloggers Bloom Day participants for not having a sufficient number of houseplants, something I'm tempted to do again this winter. (Instead, though, I think I'm going to try to get it together to participate.)
8. List: Houseplants Which Could, In Theory, One Day Produce Something Edible, Perhaps (5 October 2010) May or may not have been one of my best posts of the year (though my preamble, with an eight-item list of disclaimers, is certainly the acme of something or another), but it attracted lots of comments.
7. Lawn Ornaments: Frozen Water Balloons (6 January 2010) This post has been weirdly popular with people who don't otherwise read PATSP: I've seen it linked to from a number of non-gardening websites, which surprised me. Plans to build on the idea this year by constructing a multi-colored back yard ice-block fort have been hindered by the lack of suitably large and durable containers in which to freeze the water. I'm still hoping to figure something out, though.
6. Pretty picture: Vanda Pakchong Blue (20 April 2010) Included because this is, upon review of all 2010 posts, my favorite photo from the whole year.
5. List: Houseplants You'll Want to be Growing During the Zombie Apocalypse of 2014 (5 March 2010) This was also extremely popular with non-gardeners (lots of zombie enthusiasts out there, it turns out), but gardeners liked it too. (Enough that one of them may have ripped off the idea, which I find bothersome, though I can't prove it was malicious.) And it won me a Mousie, which means a lot of you knew about it already and you want me to move on to the next one on the list. So I will!
4. Being Robin Ripley (8 April 2010) PATSP's contribution to the Ugly Vegetable Garden War of 2010.
3. BREAKING: Dog Adoption Complete (25 March 2010) The very first Sheba-related post that included pictures. You knew there was going to be a Sheba picture somewhere in this list.
2. Carmen Miranda (Ananas comosus), Part I (17 June 2010) I made an exception to the general no-plant-profiles rule for this particular post, for the simple reason that I will never again write a footnote that's as perfect as this post's footnote 5, and I will not stop telling people about it until everyone in the whole world knows.
1. Book Review: Hothouse Flower, by Margot Berwin (30 September 2010) I read a book once and found it unsatisfying.
What will the best posts of 2011 be like?
Probably quite a bit like these, actually. But we won't know for a year, so keep reading.