With few exceptions, May is Bob’s favorite month

With few exceptions, May is Bob's favorite month By Bob Karolevitz Except for a few minor seasonal flaws, May is my favorite month.

It's the month of violets, pussy willows, plum blossoms and butterflies. Tulips bloom, and so does South Dakota's official flower, the purple pasque. It seems that everything is in a hurry to brighten up the drab winter landscape.

You can almost hear the brome grass growing in the greening road ditches, it comes up so fast. It's not my favorite plant, though, when it takes over where it's not supposed to, but its matted, unpullable root system keeps our fence rows from being buried in dust like they were in the Dirty Thirties B.B. (Before Brome).

Our hens begin to lay eggs in out-of-the-way places instead of in the regular nests. Pretty soon they'll be clucking and trying to hatch out a new batch of chicks. I'm all for those persistent setting hens, but Phyllis doesn't agree with me. Needless to say, we won't be expanding our flock this year.

I've watched the tree buds turn into leaves. The wrens are back, and so are the mourning doves whose May melody echoes loud and clear across the land. Morels pop up in secluded spots, and asparagus � both wild and tame � sets a vegetative record for rapid growth.

I polish my golf clubs, which I don't use much, but at least there's the urge to tee off. I look at the jar of marbles on my office shelf and nostalgically recall the springtime game when all boys knew what it meant when they heard "three fingers flat, knuckles down tight."

Thus it was that I was waxing philosophical about the beauties of May when my realistic wife interrupted my pleasant reverie.

"It's also the month of lawn-mowing and window-washing," she said with a sense of urgency in her voice.

"I don't do windows," I muttered almost under my breath,but the spell had been broken, and I knew I would eventually end up with a wet rag and a bottle of Windex.

Gone were those idyllic thoughts of meadowlarks, the sweet scent of lilacs, seed catalogs and the miracles of nature. I began to think of moles, buffalo gnats and Canadian thistles, all because Phyllis had to be so doggoned practical.

Instead of looking at the sunnyside of May, I saw my delightful daydreams suddenly become nightmares. The scent of apple blossoms changed into the pungent odor of weed-killer.

It's funny how a mood can be altered by the way you look at things. The optimist's half-full glass can quickly become the pessimist's half-empty one.

But no matter what Phyllis says, I'm not going to let her spoil my image of the wonderful season of May baskets and May poles. For the moment I'll disregard the temperamental mower and those mottled panes. I'll think only good thoughts. There'll be plenty of time to swat mosquitoes, pick potato bugs and worry about those butterflies turning into caterpillars.

Now, to celebrate my favorite month, I think I'll go hunt mushrooms which are symbolic of this awakening time. I'll just ignore Phyllis's caustic comment that the morels I bring home will probably be all full of sand.

© 2001 Robert F. Karolevitz

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