CAROLYN'S COMPOSITIONS

April 27, 2008

A KUDZU COVERED VEHICLE GRAVEYARD


Summer is vacation time. This item is a warning for Northerners visiting the southeastern states…

Among America’s many enemies, none is more disastrous than Pueraria Lobata, commonly known as KUDZU.

Residents of the southeastern United States, where it grows prolifically, must prepare for sporadic, unpredictable energy blackouts not caused by electrical storms, high-energy demands or power plant breakdowns. The major culprit is kudzu, which has a reputation of growing a “mile-a-minute” or a “foot-a-night.”
 
Its elongated stems reach several hundred feet skyward, entangling themselves in electrical lines and transformers, making it the worst menace the power companies must deal with. Communities affected by kudzu must prepare for sudden population spurts nine months following the blackouts. Women can prevent these mini-population booms by preparing ahead of time.

Kudzu’s reputation as a devilish plant is well founded, as Atlanta’s Interstate Route 285 driver John Doe could attest to if he could be found.

John Doe entered I-285 at 7:00 a.m., traveling from his suburban home to his downtown job site. Two exits later he was caught in a bumper-to-bumper rush hour traffic jam. By 7:30 a.m. traffic was at a standstill. Drivers asked: Is it construction or an accident?

After making a smidgen of an inch progress, John wondered if he would make it to work on time. A tortoise could outrace him at this speed. Absorbed by this concern, he failed to notice his vehicle was stalled adjacent to an active kudzu patch.

The kudzu plants in the patch recognized their opportunity. At 8:00 a.m. the mile-a-minute green menace began advancing toward the traffic, moving toward what it viewed as another automobile graveyard that needed beautifying.
 
At 9:00 a.m., in 90 degree Atlanta heat, the drivers reached the limit of their patience. They were even more impatient as they began to recognize the true danger of the traffic jam. Kudzu. Was there no escape?

At 10:30 a.m. the traffic helicopter spotted a green wave of “ivy.” Kudzu had engulfed the vehicles, burying John and the other commuters forever.

Surviving kudzu requires southerners and travelers to follow certain rules.
 
First, don’t let the beauty of the vines or their reputation as livestock feed fool you. If you are naïve enough to plant this vine, know its roots go several feet underground, making it impossible to weed out later. It will overrun all your other garden plants and your cattle won’t consider it appetizing. An additional risk: if neighbors discover you planting kudzu, you may be the instant subject of their murder plot.

Second, close your windows at night lest the kudzu vine creep inside your bedroom and take over—or even worse, bury or choke you. For the same reasons, you should run, not walk, past any kudzu patch.

Finally, avoid kudzu crafts. Setting a kudzu vine basket, wreathe or other craft item on damp soil will encourage it to take root and start growing. Sending your friends a kudzu vine craft could bury your friendship under a wavy green blanket of ivy leaves. On the other hand, if you want to get rid of an enemy…well, need anything more be said?

So Northerners—and Southerners—beware…take care…avoid kudzu!   —excerpted from the booklet KUDZU written by Carolyn while she lived in Stone Mountain,
Georgia.

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month. To read posts on this subject click on the following: WILL YOU LOVE ME TO DEATH?

For more timely reading, click on the folders DOMESTIC VIOLENCE and/or CHILD ABUSE ISSUES at www.carolyncholland.wordpress.com

To read additional recent posts, click on the following:
BEANERY WRITERS NEWSLETTER (BWN) Vol. 1 Issue 1 April 2008

WHAT IS THE KEY INDICATOR TO YOUR WRITING SUCCESS?

YE OLD ’ROUND ’TUIT

IN SEARCH OF THE ARABELLA

HOW BITTER ARE PERSONS IN SMALL PENNSYLVANIA COMMUNITIES?

SOUTHWESTERN PENNSYLVANIANS DRINK MOXIE: Do They Like It?

To receive a sample copy of the Beanery Writers Newsletter, E-mail beanerywriters@yahoo.com with the words NEWSLETTER SAMPLE typed in the subject line. Information on subscribing and unsubscribing is included in the newsletter.

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