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Monday, July 28, 2008

The March of the Weeds

They went unnoticed all winter long, slumbering with sinister patience as they awaited the coming of the spring. As the skies turned blue and the sun made its way ever higher in the sky, they drew in their strength, sapping the life from those around them, pushing their ugly faces from the ground, stretching toward the sky until the lawn was clothed in weeds.

Not yet satisfied, they turned their wicked sights upon the house that squatted fearfully, hidden beneath the ivy, and they marched through the cracks and the crevices of the sidewalk, punching through the chinks in the mortar until they made the house their headquarters.

From there they plotted the ruin of the neighborhood. Their evil schemes and dark desires would spill forth upon unsuspecting lawns, taking root within their homes and eventually overcoming the university sleeping peacefully and prettily across the avenue.

Or so it seemed - for the university did not slumber, it's maintenance crews were not unready. They had seen and were warned by the dandelions in the lawns - magic puffs of doom spreading seeds of hideous leaves and deviously cute flowers throughout the region. The facilities department stood their ground, spritzing weed after weed until at last they had been pushed back, back across the avenue, back from house to house and lawn to lawn until at last they were come to that dread source of darkness and ruin - C House.

There the last stands would be made - the university would send its best men for the job, but the weeds had long held this fortress of overgrowth and would have the greater strength of arms. Many there were that fell that day. Good men and good gardeners, choked to death by puffs of doom, lost in weeds 7 feet tall, grabbed and slaughtered by foul beasts hiding between the stalks, their numbers quickly dwindled. President Z paced within his office, desperate for some relief and yet none came.

The battle wore on, day after day, week after week, month after month until the sun rose in the south and the winds blew cold air, the leaves changed from green to yellow and red and finally to brown. The weeds knew their doom was near, their hopes of victory dispelled - defeat had come at the hands of fall. One by one their colors faded, one by one they shriveled into oblivion, and then one day all that could be seen in that accursed place were the bodies of those whose lives had purchased time.

Great biers were erected, bagpipes moaned, heads were bowed and tears were shed as the university and those around honoured the fallen. The university burned the dead shells of weeds and planted a great garden in their place to memorialize the proud deeds of their comrades in arms and stand as a reminder of the glorious defenders who would stand against any weed who would rise again. And so peace returned to the little neighborhood and the weeds did as weeds usually do - rose in those places least desired, but never again did they dare to rise in force to challenge the might of the university's maintenance crews.

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