Chris Muir's Day By Day

Monday, November 25, 2013

Probably Americans Wouldn't Do Much Better

"When it comes to trees, we're stumped! Survey shows nine out of ten Brits struggle to recognise Holly leaves and don't know where conkers come from."

(Note: "Conkers" is a game played by boys in the UK, it involves drilling a hole in a Horse Chestnut, threading a string through it, and swinging the chestnut against another chestnut wielded by an opponent similarly armed. The chestnut that isn't broken by the engagement is the "winner." The horse chestnut itself, as well as the game, answers to the name "conkers.")

How many of you out there can identify an Ash tree? A Black Walnut? An Osage Orange? For that matter, how many of you can recognize Poison Ivy when you see it? Stinging Nettles? How many of you have ever seen a Wild Turkey out in the wilderness? A coyote? Red Fox? Do you know which snakes in your state are venomous? Can you identify them? Ever found an arrowhead in the woods? What about a geode? Have you ever, just for a lark, panned for gold in a local stream? Can you identify birds without seeing them, just by hearing them?

There's a whole other world out there to discover, if you just push away from the electronic devices and go in search of it. Or take the electronic device with you, and use it to identify what you find out there; easier than carrying a half-dozen guidebooks.

2 comments:

ProudHillbilly said...

Some of the above. Definite yes to being able to identify local venomous snakes since I live in the woods on a mountainside and only about a mile north of the largest rattlesnake den in WV - way easier to decide it isn't venomous than to go through a mental Rolodex for every snake species.

Murphy's Law said...

Red Foxx? That's easy. He used to be on Sanford and Son!