An edited and expanded version of my Facebook status update, from April 18, 2014.
Writing is like travelling in your very own flying, amphibious car, you can go anywhere.
It’s excitement plus here in Campbelltown, I just activated my Opal Card. I might even embark on a public transport mystery tour but then again, I could just be the envy of all my friends, as usual, by spending the weekend studying weeds. While they’re out dirt bike riding or hang gliding I’m reading up on Ricinus communis, the most toxic plant known to humankind. Beat that, if you dare!
Alas, one of my rivals just trounced my hardcore spirit of adventure. They’re Googling Nepenthes attenboroughii, the Giant Pitcher Plant, which is even more lethal than Ricinus communis. It has been known to catch and kill rats.
Not even the notorious Orphan School Creek has Nepenthes lurking amongst the junkies needles. What do you mean you’ve never heard of Orphan School Creek? You know of the Amazon, The Nile, and the Colorado River, yet you’ve never heard of this waterfront wonderland, nestled in among the most prestigious estates in Canley Vale and Carramar?
Nepenthes attenboroughi, possibly the only diabolical invasive species never to haunt the most picturesque weed choked storm water creek on the planet, kills rats by dissolving them in an acidic cocktail. The less deadly Ricinus communis is unsurprisingly a good source of ricin, a poison with a malevolent reputation. It conjures up images of the ricin tipped umbrella used as a stealth weapon, by an agent of the Bulgarian secret police, to murder dissident writer Georgi Markhov.
This status update/article, has turned into a slice of horror history. Anyone who said writing isn’t fun should be dipped head first into the world’s largest specimen of Nepenthes attenboroughi. Either that or they should be sentenced to 10 hours of Juncus acutis deseeding, in the Brick Pit, at Sydney Olympic Park. Which is worse, you decide.
The thread of logic in this article might be fraying fast but I think I’ve proved the idea that writing is like travelling in your very own flying amphibious car. You can go anywhere you like. There is no limit to the parties you can crash.
The Brick Pit, at Sydney Olympic Park, began life as a clay mine. It used to produce two thirds of the red bricks found in Sydney houses. It was also the site for Bartertown scenes in Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome. This hole is now one of the last refuges in the Sydney Basin for the Green and Gold Bell Frog. The soil down there is not a great deal more fertile than moondust but the place is looking less like a desert than it once did, thanks to unrelenting efforts to transform it into a haven for birds, lizards and frogs.