Wednesday, November 07, 2007

The Hartman Garden Center

Greetings, everyone, and welcome back to Monkeesims! I'm just as surprised as you are to find myself posting again after such a long absence. I guess the fact that I've been playing TS2 constantly and the ease of using the camera in the game vs. TS1 has made it easier to take pics without disrupting the fun of the game. That, and I have nothing else to do during my breaks at work, so it seems a small thing to post these blogs when I have material to do so. :-)

This is the story of how one woman's tumultuous romantic relationship resulted in fresh, great tasting produce becoming available to everyone in the Monkeesims neighborhood. But first, let's recap. Last time, we talked briefly about the Daniels household, which wound up consisting of the dread pirate (turned politician) Jack Daniels, his wife Regina, adopted daughter Vyn, Jack's best friend, Clarence Andrews, and Clarence's wife, Amy Andrews. I have a picture this time, though - I'll leave it to you to figure out who's who...

Vyn: "How am I supposed to get married with a pirate for a dad scaring off all the guys?"

Basically, Clarence and Amy moved out of the house for some peace and quiet, but they didn't really find any, things just got more screwed up with babies and vampirism and other disasters. And they thought living with a pirate was bad. We're going to give both the Daniels and Andrews family a break already, though, and focus on another family, the Hartmans. I guess you call them a family. It consists of singles Leon and Rinoa Hartman, originally intended to be platonic roommates (unrelated, but sharing the curse of TS1 and having the same last name).

Leon: "That Rinoa is one hot babe…in a totally platonic way of course…"

Well, the whole roommate thing was working just fine for a while. The two have separate rooms, separate lives (Rinoa has a job in the military, Leon has no job at all), and a decent relationship as "best friends". In addition, Rinoa had a boyfriend in the form of Tommy Wolf (aka the guy who wound up with lycanthropy at the end of last post) who treated her much better than she really deserves. Below, we see Tommy's picture adorning her bedroom wall over some roses he gave her after a date. Oh, and Leon Jackson's picture above her bedside table. Perhaps a not so subtle indicator of things to come, but I don't want to give anything away too soon...

Rinoa: "Do I have a thing for Leon Jackson? No…why do you ask?"

Rinoa may have had the hots for Leon Jackson, but she was smart enough not to do anything about it. She wasn't the only one harboring a not so secret infatuation, though. Below, we see Leon Hartman's room, featuring portraits of Rinoa, Kitty Wilson, and Amy Andrews (not visible because it's around the corner). Oh, and framed pictures of himself up on the wall from one of the local photo booths. What a douche bag…

Leon seems to misunderstand the definition of a "secret infatuation"…

Well, Leon's feelings for Rinoa didn't stay hidden for too long (as if they were to begin with). He eventually decided to make his move, and he decided to do it at the worst possible time - during a party when her boyfriend, Tommy, was there. I wasn't paying attention, and next thing I knew, Leon had laid a big fat smooch on Rinoa, and Tommy was quick to lay a big fat smack upside her head. This lead to Rinoa trying to salvage the relationship by calling Tommy 8 times that evening, and after considerable sucking up, she eventually tried making a pass at him a day or so later. Of course, SHE chose to do it while Leon was there, and he got pissed and smacked her around. In the end, Rinoa got used as a punching bag for both parties, and Leon and Tommy wound up hating each other. The three couldn't be in the same room for a while without a fight of some sort breaking out…

Well, Rinoa decided to focus on her military career since guys were clearly idiots, and spent all of her energy bettering herself. She botched three important decisions at work in a row, though, and got herself demoted and lost some of her common sense (i.e. logic points) in the process. By the time her two days off in a row came around, she stopped caring about both guys and her job, and took up gardening, the next best thing. Well, she might have taken it up a little too much, as the picture below would seem to indicate…

Rinoa: "Green skin…leaves for hair…how do you like me now, Leon?"

Well, Rinoa may not be the smartest sim alive, but she was smart enough to realize that not having a significant other greatly reduced her chances of ever having children the "normal" way (let's ignore the fact that in the sim world, it's so easy to get a kid over the phone, you can do it accidentally). With her new status as a plant sim, though, she could have all the kids she wanted, without the mess of a relationship, and have one she did. Meet Iris, the first of many plant babies.

Rinoa: "If it would just start raining, I won't even have to bathe her!"

Maybe I'm a weirdo, but I personally find the plant babies to be a little freaky, though not enough to deny Rinoa the "joys" of having one. I'll take plant babies any day over the sim "alien baby", thank you very much. I did very much appreciate the fact that all Rinoa had to do to fill the little rug rat's needs up was shake some spores off her head (just like with a real baby!). Iris didn't stay a baby for very long, however. It seemed only a matter of days before she'd gone from sitting around in her playpen to sitting around in the hot tub all day long.

Rinoa: "If I only had a magic lamp, I'd wish Leon would disappear!"

Well, as the painful memories of her rejection by both Leon Hartman and Tommy Wolf began to fade, Rinoa decided that the life of a plant sim wasn't for her (maybe the prospect of wilting and dying from being out of the sun for a few hours was too much for her). She bought a potion from the garden club, and in a flash (or gulp), she was restored to normal. Well, no longer being a plant sim herself, Rinoa found the idea of having a full grown plant spawn of herself running around just a little too funky, and decided to suggest to Iris that she move in with other special (i.e. freaky) people like herself. Of course, the biggest freaks in town are Alfred Witte and Tommy Wolf, Rinoa's ex, but they were all too happy to take on a room mate (especially considering the nice, fat $20,000 bonus for taking on someone new).

If there's such a thing as the "butt crack of Sim city", this is definitely it…

Well, her new room mates treated Iris well enough, but they just didn't have a whole lot in common (besides their love of cooking shows). Alfred only got up late at night, as did Tommy, though that had more to do with sheer laziness than his lycanthropy. Iris spent all day long trying to soak up the rays of the sun and looking for a good place to plant stuff, which was no easy task on Tommy's property. Still, having a plant sim in the house had it's benefits (like the happy spores), and even though she was kin to Rinoa, who Tommy didn't like so well, both he and Alfred where hesitant to see her go.

Alfred: "I just don't think we see eye to eye on the whole sun thing…"

Well, despite her close bonds she'd formed with Tommy and Alfred in the one day she lived with them, Iris decided it was time to "make friends" elsewhere with a little more in common. Thus, she began producing *shudder* plant babies at an incredible rate, and began moving them out one at a time as they reached adulthood. In time, there were a total of five other adult plant sims awaiting her arrival when she moved to a new empty lot. With their combined resources, they constructed a plant sim paradise - an enormous greenhouse full of dirt patches to plant, sun lamps, and showers and toilets (more of a suckfest for any regular sim, but plant sims have weird tastes).

Hartman Garden Center, a regular plant pimp palace.

Well, the end result was the Hartman Garden Center (named after Iris Hartman, who received her last name from Rinoa, the hoochie). The goal of the garden center was to produce the best possible vegetables, and produce they did. As a result, all the fat, lazy sims around town had the option to receive mouthwatering vegetables for nothing more than the cost of a visit to the lot (which for some of them was still too much to ask). In short, Rinoa's inability to maintain her relationship with Tommy resulted in the formation a new race of sims, and the creation of a valuable service to the neighborhood.

Whew…I'm kind of getting tired of posting here, and this one is getting a little weird. I've typed it over the course of a few hours, and I have a tough time remembering how I went from introducing Leon and Rinoa Hartman to a giant greenhouse full of crazy plant people giving away vegetables. Oh, well. That's part of the fun of the sims - the random (sometimes) nature of events. I just go with it. Speaking of going, I'm out of here for now. There WILL be more posts forthcoming, so be sure to drop in! :-)


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