Jonny Poppyseed  

ByteChaser2 52M
2834 posts
3/5/2006 5:41 am

Last Read:
3/6/2006 6:54 pm

Jonny Poppyseed

Years ago, my brother and I had aspired to be biologists. He was completely over the top for botany and I wanted to be a Marine Biologist. Of course, along the way, we had to do these pesky courses... Earth sciences, Chemistry, Advanced Biology. Just to name a few.

The Adv. Bio. class was completely rockin. There was no fixed curriculum, the teacher had us do our own. We'd decide what we'd learn, do our own studies, grade our selves... For the first time ever, I was actually in control of my own destiny! SWEET!

So I'd thrown myself into it. Every couple of weeks, I'd come up with something... this one - that you'll soon read about, involved making animal study mounts. We were to gather the carcasses of animals from several species, properly flesh and preserve the skins and mount them for later comparison study.

So, Dad, brother and I are at the local dump with our .22 and a pellet gun, on the hunt for rats. Not really having much luck in the day time - rats are generally nocturnal you see - so we were busying ourselves by shooting cans and old propane bottles, rummaging through the heaps and taking pot-shots at the seagulls.

Dad had wandered off to the fields to the west of the dump. He'd been gone for maybe an hour or so when he'd come running - I mean a dead-out sprint - for the truck, waving his arms and yelling it was time to go.

So, you kinda have to know dad here. He was a Corpsman with the Marines in Vietnam. 2 tours with frontline grunts. He'd managed to not just survive, he actually thrived under the threat of death for two tours. There's little in the world that scares pop. Not even his own mortality...

Seeing this granite pillar of courage racing scared and screeching like a little girl was quite a bit more than a little unsettling to say the least.

So, piled into the back of the truck, racing down the dump access road, dad is yelling that we lay down in the bed and stay put... Ok, now I'm really scared... And there we stayed, brother and I, until we got home.

See, dad had wandered into an opium poppy field. Me? I'd have bet every nickle I had that you couldn't grow those things anywhere but the steaming jungles and desert plains of Asia... Come to find out, poppies will grow anywhere and as it happens, a couple of growers had seeded a field for themselves out behind the dump.

What had got dad all twisted up wasn't that he found himself in an opium field. He'd had a kind of flash back to the war. The only one I'd ever witnessed from him.

What's really funny is that he'd had the presence of mind to snap off a seed pod that he'd sent - anonymously - to the State Police. The dump is closed now but I expect there's a poppy or two growing there abouts...

FeistySyn 51F

3/5/2006 2:14 pm

I grew up in N. California and when I was about 4 years old we moved out of the Bay Area to 30 acres near the coast, a very rural dairy farm area... we had wild poppies growing everywhere and I loved them. One day I picked a big bunch to decorate with while playing "house" ... my two wicked older sisters came along and convinced me that since picking poppies was illegal (because they were the state flower), I was going to jail. I remember being terrified for days afterward that the Police were going to pull up any minute and haul me away for illegal flower picking... damn siblings can sure torture us can't they?

Apparently the depth of depravity here is bottomless... don't you feel right at home?

ByteChaser2 52M

3/6/2006 7:39 am

Yeah feisty lol You can pick your friends and you can pick your nose... But you cant wipe your family on the bottom the the couch huh?

jussweetlilolme 43F

3/6/2006 2:33 pm

Poppy fields are a plenty in the grand country of Germany. We had a nieghbor when I was younger that loved next to me that cultivated their very own private supply of this flower. Needless to say they were a very relaxed couple.


ByteChaser2 52M

3/6/2006 6:15 pm

I'll bet they were sweets. Did you know that all poppies have an opiate in them? Most are pretty diluted though.

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