Fitting in

Every one of us likes to think we have a romantic side. Being romantic is a soft, rewarding experience; we feel we are making the world a more cohesive and friendly place. Anyone with a serious hobby has a notion that they are somehow contributing to the harmony of the universe.

Take gardening. It is easy to feel harmony with Mother Nature; perhaps to feel what a parent’s feeling is for their children. One feels particularly proud of what the gardens contribute to the world of living things.

“What are you talking about?” Mother Nature asks. “If you want romance go see a movie. It’s a dog eat dog out here in the ecosystem.” It is true. The only value is the ability to procreate, to sustain the species. Each and every entity surviving in nature for eons has been honing its survival qualities and its unique leverage against other species to maintain survival in the ecosystem.

Grackles are no exception. Grackles are those medium-sized black birds with long tails and iridescent heads. It turns out grackles have mastered plant thievery in several ways. Most notably they are classic marauders of young seedlings, soft, premature seeds and fruit. They travel in classic packs, performing raids on gardens and trees in large numbers. Direct and peripheral damage is irrelevant as they search for vulnerable plant life.

Mariner has had to set aside his romantic side. Last evening he planted 50 onion settings (virtually no bulb with a leaf about 3 inches high).

This morning when mariner went out to the garden, all fifty settings had pulled from the ground – even though the grackles seemed not to like onions and left the onions sprawled across the garden box.

Nowhere in any garden handbook does it say cover the bed with wire protection. Mariner replanted the onions and laid hardware wire across the box.

He hustled four rabbits out of the yard this morning, too. Intellectually, mariner understands that every successful species has its own ethic about survival. It’s just that humans think they can master Mother Nature’s little rules for survival. This misconception is why suddenly we have climate change on our hands.

Mariner is going to a movie tonight.

Ancient Mariner

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