21 May 2009
A rose is a rose is a cyclist
A golden rose has been unveiled at the Chelsea Flower Show, on this week, named after the Olympic cyclist Victoria Pendleton. There's a short feature about it on the website of Beds, Bucks and Herts, which sounds more like a dating agency than a BBC local radio station.
Golden rose for a golden girl is all very well, but you can't push the parallels too far. A (possibly apocryphal) catalogue entry about the Maria Callas rose allegedly read 'Maria Callas: Bright, bold display. Good for bedding.' Internet searches don't appear to bring up that description, but one rose catalogue describes Maria Callas as 'susceptible to a variety of diseases and pests', which is bang on.
Thousands of roses are named after famous people - Diana, Dolly Parton, Chaucer, Bing Crosby et al - but I couldn't find any honouring other cyclists, unless you count Audrey Hepburn. Not even any famous Tour de France winners ('hardy and tough, but may require complex chemical treatment'?).
Anyway, we can't afford to go to Chelsea Flower Show, but who needs it when you have a Plantlock (picture)? I'm going to put Victoria Pendleton in there with Audrey Hepburn and Dolly Parton.