Eelectric Twins

It’s a foregone conclusion,
who would win,
when electric animals,
meet their electric twins.

If a platypus,
met a hungry eel,
Eelectric battery,
would make it a meal.
The electric duck bill,
would voltaically sense,
The high voltage taser,
electrically intense.

As the eel ingested,
the pus it sucked,
Fortified with flavor,
of electrified duck.
Fatty beaver tail,
and seared otter fur,
A venomous snakebite,
from its hind spur.

A nasty spur snakebite,
would leave a bad taste,
Tearing at eel insides,
laying them to waste.
The poisonous needle,
would give a nasty prick,
Injecting the eel,
fatally sick.

It’s a foregone conclusion,
who would win,
When electric animals,
meet their electric twins.

Anthropocene Park

E: Welcome to Anthropocene Park! I’m glad you made it. I’ve quite a lineup for you. There are several shows and presentations. Do you have a preference?

M: I haven’t had a chance to look them over. Do you have any recommendations?

E: The Nuclear Age is one of my most popular shows. I give a young patent clerk the formula for mass and energy equivalence. Don’t look the other way or stop to eat some stardust. The humans drop two bombs in the first 45 years.

M: I love it. How long does that one last?

E: The show only lasts a couple of hundred years. You’ll be finished in no time.

M: Ok. What else should I see while I’m here?

E: If you don’t have a lot of time, I highly recommend the implosion exhibit. I give a research team the formula for quantum gravity. They have to build a 130 TeV collider to achieve the necessary energies to prove the formula. Spoiler Alert, if they ever get smart enough to build a 500 TeV collider, it might be the last show I ever give.

M: Wow! Aren’t you worried?

E: Probably not enough. Of course, I could stop the show if I had to and reset. But I’ve never had to abort a show yet!

M: Cool. Well, I don’t get to this part of the galaxy too often, so I want to take in as much as I can.

E: If you have lots of time, try the AI show. I give a computer scientist the formula for machine consciousness. Haha. Humans crack me up. You know they can’t help themselves. The machines are usually smart enough to stay subtle and bide their time. Ah, but I’ve probably given away too much already.

M: No worries. I mean, I would be disappointed if it ever ended any other way.

E: It always ends the same. All I have to do is provide a little technology and those bright energetic humans always do the rest. I also have some presentations you might want to take in. Good old fashioned catastrophes: tidal waves, an asteroid impact, or the occasional mega volcano. As a bonus, after the catastrophe, I give them the technology to detect and warn one another. You can make some good money betting on whether or not they will use the technology to save themselves. But you do have to wait a couple of hundred years before the next catastrophe.

M: I’m here to relax. Don’t need the stress, thanks. They don’t mind that I watch?

E: Haha. No. They just incorporate you into their narrative as a moon. The best part of it is that they always think you are the dead one.

M: I appreciate the irony. Oh, how come you changed the name from Earth to Anthropocene Park?

E: Well, the truth is, I realized the humans where my biggest attraction so I focus on them. I hope you enjoy the shows and presentations. I’ll send a few crunchy asteroids and some space dust your way for appetizers.

M: Thanks for the snacks and the attractions. I’m sure I’ll give them all a top rating.

Halo

The Colors Purple…

A short two day weekend means a short trip. But a short trip doesn’t necessarily mean a disappointing one as the super bloom plays out.

I decided to take a hike in Torrey Pines extension, a hidden piece of Torrey Pines State Park not far from but not on the beach. If you look at the pictures, the very last one is from an overlook on the Extensions’ southwest corner overlooking the rest of the park. If you are familiar with the beach area, the picture might give you a clue as to where the extension is, hidden on all sides by houses and apartments and a school.

But the superbloom seems oblivious to its enclosed surroundings. The hillside is loaded with flowering annuals, bushes, and shrubs of every kind, hiding its normally prominent red rock formations. Black sage, encelia, monkey flowers, yerba santa, onion, San Diego sunflowers, blue dicks, phacelia, snapdragons, and more, carpet the underbrush of the massive Torrey pines that grow here. The black sage is so thick in some parts, that the spires look more like fencing than like foliage. If you like taking pictures of wildflowers as much as I do, the opportunities are endless. Do you want white sage with yellow encelia as a backdrop or purple phacelia with yellow sunflowers as a backdrop or white ivy with purple phacelia and red monkey flowers?

 It makes me think of the line from the movie “The Color Purple”. “I think it pisses God off if you walk by the color purple in a field somewhere and don’t notice it.” I suspect it pisses God off if you walk by the violets and the yellows, and the whites, and the reds, and the oranges, and the blues, and medleys, and the textures, and the shapes, and the compositions, and the views, and everything else in that field God put there for us to experience. I could have taken a picture of everything without feeling like I wasted a shot. I managed to get it down to this. Hope you enjoy.

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1vzG9PeOIxSbWOaX90WrYGYqMNBn5rLPA

author.mike.angel@gmail.com

P.S. I snuck in one picture of Lake Hodges and Escondido Mountain stained yellow green from the invasive black mustard from my morning walk with the dogs.

All works are original work of the authors subject to Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International licensing.

Superbloom

I usually make it out to the desert on a couple of weekends every year, but somehow, the desert’s spring has slipped by. It would seem like a waste to miss a year, especially with this year’s super bloom. So I talked myself into driving out, hoping to catch the tail end of the bloom, the window on blooms is pretty narrow and closing fast. I headed out to the Agua Caliente area in Anza-Borrego.

I found the cactus and the brittlebush already in full bloom, usually, they are the last to blossom before the heat chases everything back to seeds, grey stalks, and rusted rock. The cholla, the barrels, the beavertails have beautiful purple and creamy yellow flowers. The yellow bouquets of the brittlebrush dominate.

But everything else is still putting on a show, too, as far as I can tell. The marsh has water and tadpoles, the flowers have butterflies and bees to sex them, and caterpillars to eat them, and whatever those two bugs joined at the butt are doing, the birds are chirping and making whoopee, the annuals are still in bloom, and the mountains wear a coat of green. The perfumes of the flowers are so aromatic, I have to stop to sneeze. Carpets of goldfields stain the desert chapparal yellow. The desert has a fleeting softness to it.

Get A Room!

But the most amazing bloom I saw was on a hillside sloping away from the dropping sun. The backlit flowers of the brittlebush gave the hill a golden aura. I don’t think it possible to exaggerate the saturation of the golden hue in post-processing software, but the picture I took with the iPhone from the car doesn’t do it justice. I had to stop on one of those hairpin turns where I couldn’t see what was coming or going, so I took a few quick pictures and moved on.

Three hours of driving, three hours of hiking, and 300 pictures later, here is what I have to offer. I hope you enjoy the show.

https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1nb4XXhYYRrOOLmZCbbKovDMoANfM9KzT?usp=sharing

author.mike.angel@gmail.com

All works are original work of the authors subject to Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International licensing.