|One of the lucky ones.|
This year, in a move 100 percent motivated by environmental sustainability and not at all by indifference or laziness, we decreed that Fencebroke Promontory's lawns, such as they are, should be allowed to run wild with white clover. This, in an effort to provide more forage for the downtrodden wild honeybees we've all heard so much about.
As a method for attracting more honeybees this has worked swimmingly. As an excuse to ignore the weeds in one's lawn, it's been fabulous (if not entirely convincing when held in defense against neighbors' dirty looks). Whether or not we are in fact "saving" the bees, however, remains to be seen. That's because I myself have accidentally stepped on no fewer than five of these noble pollinators when ambling barefoot through the lawn. My daughter: three. My wife: just one that I know about. My son: none so far, but he's due.
Not that we're keeping track.
And those are just the known casualties. How many more have been flattened under careless heals too well shod to feel the meek sting of a bee's dying outrage? Have my heavy old gardening clogs become weapons of oblivious mass destruction? Am I to be someday tried for apiarian war crimes by a tribunal of disaffected survivors?
It certainly seems likely.
But maybe I deserve such a fate. Because if anything, the honeybee has become more literally downtrodden under my watch, and my own bumbling bigfeet are the ones doing the trodding. As penance, I've tried imposing draconian lawn-usage rules for the family, but it is surprisingly difficult to play soccer on tiptoe, and the old "lawn is made of lava" trick works better as an afternoon game than a summer-long edict.
Oh well, I tried. I can only hope the little unlucky buzzers got a good sip of clover nectar before stabbing my daughter's toe and rendering her terrified of the very grass and world she plays upon. Seems like, for a bee, there'd be worse ways to go.