Thursday, May 2, 2013

What They Said: Weeds

A. A. Milne

By: William G. Muir
*Weed noun \ˈwēd\

1 a (1) : a plant that is not valued where it is growing and is usually of vigorous growth; especially : one that tends to overgrow or choke out more desirable plants (2) : a weedy growth of plants

b : an aquatic plant; especially : seaweed
c (1) : tobacco products
(2) : marijuana
2 a : an obnoxious growth, thing, or person
b : something like a weed in detrimental quality; especially : an animal unfit to breed from 
When I was in middle school I belonged to a club know as the Outdoor Lab. It was a science club that focused on the wonders of nature. It was in this club that I first learned what a weed was. Basically any unwanted plant can be considered a weed. So essentially any plant (to my way of thinking) can be considered a weed. 

The thing is not many people would see it that way. You are going to have to search high and low to find someone that thinks of a a rose bush or a cherry tree as being a weed. Quite possibly the only such people would be the antagonist in a cartoon who snipes away the flower and just leaves the stem in the vase. I think you could also throw Mortica Addams in there as well.   
Try to deny this if you wish, but think about that one open field near you. You know the one, the one that has been allowed to grow wild. The one were the grass has grown to about knee level and has all those wild flowers growing it. You think it is hideous! Come on admit it. You wish somebody would do something about. 

Now think of your yard, what a contrast in style. Your lawn is well manicured, with its lush green grass. Grass that's been mowed and fertilized. Along where your yard meets up with walkways, driveways and fences you have used the weed wacker to make sure there no unsightly clumps of grass growing there. All your hedges are trimmed and your flowers ate all planted in a row. 
You have brought order to chaos, unlike that open field. It is an abomination to you. For all you nature lovers, this is your true. You love nature, as long as you can shape it to your will. You have no place in your heart for any part of nature that is natural. You must go to war with it. You must conquer Mother Nature and make her submit to you will. 
I can hear some of you saying not me, I do all my gardening organically. There are no chemicals to poison my plot of Earth. First off I would say quit lying to yourself, everything is chemical.
(Dihydrogen Oxide is water.) So you may not be using what you consider to be poison, but you are still at war with Mother Nature. You are still destroying an existing ecosystem, the habitats of who knows how many living creatures. And fertilizers that are made from manure are not with out their own health risk. E. Coli anyone? 
But why stop with nature, we have weeds (of sorts) in other aspects of life as well.
What if we were to think of a city as a garden. Your more urban areas, the ghettos and the projects would be analogous to the overgrown field. We do not find such areas to hold any intrinsic beauty. We tend to look at them and think of them as being run down and ugly. We wish that somebody would do something about them. 

Let us compare this to business district of a city. Instead of the tenements that have no imagination in their construction; the builds are old and in many cases are health risk to those living there. The buildings downtown are architectural master pieces. They incorporate many aspects of modern art into their designs. They are sleek with straight lines that tower far above the city steerts. Reaching out to touch the clouds. 
What about people? You ask any man who he desires to spend one night with, and you wouldn't be surprised if Pamela Anderson name was mentioned. You are not going to get too many men saying that they wish to be with the mousy girl with the glasses, the hair that is somewhat disheveled and always wears the baggy sweaters. 
Why? 
Cause our sense of beauty is narrow. But what if we expanded our notions of what beauty is? How different would our world look to us then. Instead of destroying those things that we didn't find to esthetically pleasing we looked for the natural beauty that laid inside everything. We nurtured it, did whatever it took to bring out the intrinsic beauty hidden beneath the surface. No longer would we see weeds. No, we would see nothing but flowers.  

*Merriam-Webster.com

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