Seeds of Mass Destruction

May 06, 2004

We have a pool. A nice in-ground pool. 29 x 13 feet, heated, fiberglass, hubba-hubba pool.

Our neighbor has maple trees. Maple trees are bad. Maple trees make maple seeds. Billions and billions of seeds.

As a child I loved these seeds as they were primitive helicopters, spinning slowly to the ground. My parents had a single red maple tree that produced these seeds. I played with them for hours.

As an adult I have declared war on these SEEDS OF MASS DESTRUCTION.™

My neighbor has about 47 billion maple trees. Okay, maybe not that many, but the six or eight or 52 thousand trees that he does have produce about 47 billion seeds.

Every day.


We’ve got so many of these seeds of destruction on our driveway that the seams in the concrete are outlined by the tails standing up. In a few days I will have to ascend to the roof, leaf blower in hand, to empty the gutters of billions and billions of the seeds, lest they germinate and I have maple shoots on my roof.

Our pool, naturally, is a magnet for these miracles of of reproductive genius. At least twice a day I have to empty several thousand refugees from the neighbor’s trees from the skimmer basket. Netting them off the pool surface is Sisyphian task; no sooner do you get to the last net’s worth of seeds than the wind blows and several zillion more are spiraling gracefully down into the water.

I. Hate. Maple. Seeds.

Anyone out there got a chain saw they’d like to loan me on a dark night?

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Mark H. Nichols

I am a husband, cellist, code prole, nerd, technologist, and all around good guy living and working in fly-over country. You should follow me on Twitter.