The Cauliflower that Killed

Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the produce section...

Download parameter file cauliflower.xpf

Do you ever wonder about poisonous plants?

There's so many of them. They may have beautiful flowers or exotic markings, attract all sorts of creatures with an alluring fragrance, and then poison them.

The toxins are very sophisticated and may only kill the most common predators while leaving others unharmed.

The most well known type of poisonous plant is of course the mushroom, although technically it's a fungi and not a plant...blah, blah, blah...

Nobody eats mushrooms while hiking or walking around anymore. Or, you could say, the number of people eating poisonous wild mushrooms has been decreasing every year.

My theory is: One of us is on the wrong planet.

What else would explain such a mismatch of living creatures?

There's a completely safe, edible mushroom that looks almost the same as another super-lethal mushroom in the amanita family or genus or something.

What does this say? Death to those who don't pay attention in Biology class.

Maybe the killer plants are on the wrong planet and we're Okay. That makes more sense: Killer seeds from Outer Space.

While we're on the topic of freaks of nature, have you ever seen an electric eel go hunting?

I saw this on TV. He, maybe she, lies in a darkened hole in the side of a beautiful coral reef. All you can see is a pair of little eyes peering out of the darkness.

Soon, along comes one of those colorful tropical fish. The eel lets him swim away because he's too far from the hole and the eel is too lazy to come all the way out.

The narrator says it's because the eel has many predators and has to stay close to the hole, but that's junk, I know people just like that eel, they're lazy.

Eventually somebody comes by the hole and the eel sticks his head out and stuns the poor fish with a bolt of electricity.

Talk about being a sociopath. What would we say if someone hid in basement window beside a busy street and once a day reached out and tripped someone, then dragged him in through the window?

The eel doesn't have to zap it's prey, it could go out and get them like any other normal predator, except the electric eel is sick and depraved and gets a thrill from electrocuting unwitting strangers. I'll bet they don't eat all of them, either.

Nature ain't pretty. And the vegetable kingdom is no exception, so watch out.

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