Thursday, February 25, 2010

New Header: Introduction and Pilobilus

This blog is going to take on a little new flavor. I am slightly uncertain about this, but I figure that since I am so reluctant to completely throw away the "How Not To Blog" and since I really believe the Jesus Geek thing actually matters more in the scheme of things, I am going to marry the two together, that the perversion they create may open gaps between the Netherworld and this one, ripping holes in space and time that destroy the fabric of the human PSYCHE! This child of their scandalous elopement shall be named Prometheus Studies.


World-ending aspirations aside, I want to establish a basic guiderule here. First of all, I am not really here to discuss Creationism and Evolution. I am here to point out the illusive and intricate God-given metaphors that exist in science and occasionally science fiction, and although I am perfectly willing to address the subject of macro-Evolution on request, it's something I have studied all my life and quite frankly become bored with. Some people will never accept evidence, and I say that to people on both sides of that argument. Secondly, please do not sue me if I forget to cite a source. I want to say right now: unless otherwise stated, none of the scientific information that I vomit here comes from my own creation or study, for no one ultimately creates the food that becomes their barf.

I think that metaphor there at the end failed so epically it won. ALRIGHT let me show you something less fail.

Imagine walking through an alien forest. Above you rise crystal clear stalks, pliable trunks if you will, made of nearly translucent strands called hyphae. The outside of these hyphae bears an armor-like material akin to that of an insect, called chitin, and inside the cells are nearly continuous. You, of course, cannot see that, but you can see the bulbs up at the top of the see-through trees, each one capped with plate of bright orange or smooth, reflective black.

Suddenly the tree-like creature above you rears back, nearly crushing you as the kickback of an explosion drives that head almost to the ground as a black plate bursts off. The force of the stream of liquid firing the plate off into the distance accelerates the alien trees backwards so quickly that they completely smash, bursting with their whole being into nature's fastest action. I hope you leapt out of the way in time, but I sincerely doubt it.

These spore-bearing reproductive structures, sporangia, belong to the Pilobilus fungus. Imagine if your mother shot you out of a cannon like this as a newborn! This dispersion technique allows the fungus to maximize its spread, prevent competition between the young spores and the original fungus, and give them the hope of a better life farther away.

I believe that desperation often drives people simply to wilt. A frustrated desire builds up over time, and social fear or a troubled past or uncertainty or what have you pushes you down on top of it until that desire becomes a haunting and you being to hate it. Perhaps you dream of an illustrious career or perhaps you want to do well on your football team or your English paper, or maybe you're "saving it" for the right person. What happens when that person doesn't seem to exist, or your grades come back Cs and Ds again and again? In the words of Langston Hughes, what happens to a dream deferred? Many people cannot take the pressure and wilt into discouragement as the dream lingers in their mind but they no longer strive to take hold of it. Although they may not have given up, they let off a little pressure, hanging in the middle with a shriveled dream.

Maybe, if you clicked on the link and read the poem, you see where I'm going with this. The Pilobilus builds up incredible pressure over time in that tiny head as it continues to soak up fluid like you soak up ideas and dreams. To let off the pressure is to decrease the incredible potency of the glorious burst. The Pilobilus waits until the push is much more than too much to bear, until the dream of fulfilling its natural purpose spurts forth of its own accord and the world of fungi is made better for it. Not every dream is worth a wait that kills you, but every dream is worth a wait until suddenly success comes not in the way you had imagined it, but with an eerie power that far overshadows anything you could have done had you given up or let off the pressure.

So keep working on that novel, sending it to agents, and waiting for an answer. Work smart, but work hard, and don't let off the pressure by backing out the easy way (or selling the story off to a "preditor"). Realize that this "novel" is a metaphor within a metaphor for anyone waiting for love, and love the wait knowing how unique and beautiful you are, no matter how drab or humble your surroundings.

Thanks to BIOL 2040 at UVA, and Marciel Garcia, who provided the videos on Collab.

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