In second grade we collected empty jars of baby mush, patted them to brimming with soil, and were issued a regulation bean seed to sow wedged against the glass. While other aspiring bean parents fussed over their jars, I ignored mine. With a snarl of beans tangling up the garden at home, I wistfully planted it hoping for a marigold. Soon my bean was winding its tendrils around the rings of Saturn. The other 23 jars on the windowsill contained fuzzy, mousey-grey, has-beans.
A show-off bean is a curse when you're so shy your only friends are imaginary, and suddenly teachers are congratulating you at recess and asking for gardening advice. The bean was a legend with my name on masking tape stuck to the bottom of its jar. In maniacal desperation to eliminate the cause of my unwanted fame I attempted a beanicide, hoping to poison the bean with icky paint water. It only grew more.