Wednesday, April 29, 2015


A sign, perhaps, that I should get my proposed handbasket factory up and running at triple capacity?

When I pulled onto the blacktop parking lot this morning, nothing looked different. Sure, there were the cars of the upper echelon parked in back with us peons, signaling an imminent groundskeeping surge. But that happens a couple of times a week.

No, there was no indication that when I climbed out of T-Hoe, I would find the corpses of 10,000 worms. Okay. Maybe it was not quite 10,000. But I counted 32 worms in differing stages of decomposition in a single parking space. There are 17 parking spaces in my row alone. That’s 544 deceased earthworms in just one row of the parking lot.

It’s not like we’ve had a lot of rain this week. I’m not sure what’s bringing these worms out to their death. I was not aware that worms are like lemmings. Or that there’s a Pied Piper starting small. Or that lawn-mowing makes the worms evacuate their burrows.

You have to look closely. Granted, this picture was taken AFTER school, when some of the specimens had shriveled considerable. And a couple of the ambulatory individuals may have made their way back to safety. I hope it wasn't a male and a female. That could ruin my scoop. Oh, wait. The earthworms are doin' it for themselves. Let's hope not a single one returned to the safety of the grassy knoll to propagate.

This may become one of the world’s great mysteries.

Though not as impressive as giant stone heads, the disappearance of Backroads earthworms could be discussed in the science and history books of the future. Maybe I can get some cash and a credit for this picture of some of the last of the species.

I could be a regular Jane Margaret Goodall Mead!


  1. Could someone have changed their minds about going fishing and dumped bait in that parking lot?

  2. Your talent at educatin' is known so far and so wide, even the worms are desperate to get into your classroom...

  3. My daughter would be out there rescuing them. Oh yes she would!

  4. I wouldn't have gotten out of the car. This is why, as much as I love spring, I cannot go outside if it's raining.

  5. I believe Linda because I rescue them, too. But they have to be alive. What an impressive picture of Wormageddon!

  6. Stephen,
    Most certainly not! Bait is prized here in Backroads. If not ready to use it, our denizens simply store it in the little Styrofoam container, in the bottom of the fridge, next to the Milwaukee's Best and the box of Velveeta.

    If so, they REALLY need to get into my classroom, to learn the concept of direction, as they are headed AWAY from the building. I suppose the scorpions, lizards, spiders, and gnats can make room for them.

    NO! I can't even think about that. My hair! My nostrils! My ear holes! And worse yet, my mouth will have to remain closed!

    She needs to punch the address into her GPS, get on the road, and arrive between 7:00 and 7:30 a.m., before the sizzle of the hot asphalt begins.

    I don't want to amp up your fear, but have you heard? Joe H says there's a WORMNADO on the way!

    The picture doesn't do it justice. The Pony told me they wouldn't show up on his phone camera. We got more than I expected. That lot was crawling with worms. If you were filming from above, and pulled back to show a wider angle, it would be the worm version of the wounded soldiers Battle of Atlanta scene in Gone With the Wind.