I subconsciously performed a little experiment this week, and it proved most interesting. For three days, flats of petunias, snapdragons, and lobelia patiently awaited planting in the tree island of my front yard. During those 72-plus hours, no one stole them, nor did anyone plant them. I now know I have honest neighbors who can’t take a hint! Oh well, I got up early this morning, and like the Little Red Hen, planted them myself.
The experience was actually delightful and didn’t take nearly as much time as my procrastination did: One hour of planting as opposed to 3 days of putting it off. Of course, there’s more to be done, but now I’m in the groove – or the burrow, if we’re going with gardening metaphors.
Before digging the first hole, however, I was distracted by two enormous earthworms caught up in a romantic moment! I tried to pretend I didn’t see them to save embarrassment on all sides; I couldn’t help but be amazed by this intimate scene.
First of all, I didn’t realize worms made love. Thinking back to Mr. Waldron’s biology class, I seem to remember that these slimy creatures could be cut in half and regenerate into two shorter, but distinct entities. Further contemplation, however, led me to doubt that the Lumbricus terrestris wriggle into the paths of oncoming shovels, hoping to be chopped in two in order to multiply and replenish the earthworm world.
This morning’s observation proved that these blind, cold-blooded hermaphrodites embrace each other to repopulate their species. I’m not really surprised that they have a romantic side; after-all, they have 7 hearts, don’t they? But then there’s this thought: What if the lovers were originally 2 parts of the same worm? Now that is really kinky!
Okay, I know some of you are shaking your head wondering why in heaven’s name I would ever waste so many words on the love-lives of two earthworms holed up in my garden. If you’ve ever read Diary of a Worm by Doreen Cronin and Harry Bliss, you’ll understand. These slimers can be very interesting, and they serve mankind in important ways. Why even Charles Darwin spent 39 years studying them!
If this entry hasn’t fulfilled your curiosity about earthworms, I suggest that you first build your background knowledge by visiting the Worm Facts website and then dive into the aforementioned autobiography, Diary of a Worm.
Maybe tomorrow I will disturb a praying mantis couple before the wife polishes off hubby. Ooooh! Sexual situations and violence! Here’s a PG-13 preview if you can’t wait!
May 13, 2009 at 12:40 AM
May 12, 2009 at 11:28 PM
“honest neighbors who can’t take a hint.”
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