Thursday, June 6, 2019

Day 3451

I saw a woman pulling up Queen Anne's Lace in one of the meadows this morning. I'd seen small groups of people doing this before, so I asked what she was doing. She said she was trying to remove the invasive species from the native prairie. Lots of luck with that. The lady had about a dozen Queen Anne's Lace plants in her hand. She and I were literally surrounded by millions more of these plants as far as the eye could see. I had to admire the effort, but this was the best example of a quixotic quest that I had ever seen. I think the invasive plants are winning this battle. As I was leaving to continue my walk I asked what she planned to do about the Johnson Grass. The lady had no answer. Johnson Grass is almost impossible to eradicate.

I wonder what motivates people to do impossible things? I see people trying to do the impossible almost every day. The last remains of the Blackland Prairie were definitely a lot prettier when Janet and I first moved here, but I don't know if pulling up Queen Anne's Lace one plant at a time can save it. Buffalo and antelope used to graze here. Early settlers replaced most of the prairie grasses with crops and trees. They began to extinguish the naturally occurring prairie fires that allowed the prairie to flourish. As a result most of the 12 million acre prairie is gone. Ironically, the only reason the 250 acres of native prairie in the park survived is that the place used to be a dairy farm before it was a park. The cattle loved the prairie grasses just as much as the buffalo did. Grazing cattle saved the prairie. The cows are long gone now and the city won't mow the area, so invasive species are taking over. Every year I see fewer flowers and more Johnson Grass. It's a shame.

My solution to situations like this is always fewer people. Humans are the worst invasive species of all. We are much worse than Queen Anne's Lace or Johnson Grass. We are rapidly eating all the fish in the sea, sawing down the rainforests to make houses, and continuing to reproduce at an exponential rate. This is simply not sustainable. Solar panels and windmills aren't going to fix this. Somebody needs to convince the human race to quit having babies for a while.

I kept thinking about impossible things as I continued my walk but I didn't have any answers. I don't even know how to save the city's exploding population of stray dogs. The dogs aren't the problem. It's the irresponsible people who own them. Every time there is a big rain and the tributaries overflow their banks, an avalanche of plastic bottles, Startbucks cups, and other trash float into the lake carried by the rising water. This is all people's trash from Northern suburbs. More irresponsible people. In the ensuing weeks an army of Park and Recreation workers clean up the trash that has accumulated on the shoreline and haul it away. Then it rains again and the whole process starts all over again. It's hopeless.

Maybe things like this are why my feet are getting more activity than my brain these days. I've got no answers. Everything I see people doing to fix things seems wrong. Probably my solutions are wrong too. I'm as human as the next guy.

For the moment, I'll just keep walking and try to stay active. Since today was a nice day and I had little to do, it was almost impossible to avoid mowing the grass. I mowed both the front and back yards. Mr. Fitbit will be happy today. I got in a lot of steps for a weekday.

Wendy is today's Dalmatian of the Day
Watch of the Day