I croaked the croakers

After the ice was gone this year and the weather warmed to the point where we expected to hear frogs croaking, we didn’t.
The evening serenade of amphibians in our swamps was not heard. Even the noise produced by the green, tree-climbing frogs was missing.
As I walked the edge of the swamp nothing jumped ahead of my steps. No heads protruded from the water.
Why, I wondered in an earlier Jottings.
Later in the year, I commented on the newest version of Roundup weed and grass killer. Made by Monsanto, this product ‘Fast Act,? promised ‘results in 24 hours.?
I compared the fast action of 2005 with the 2004 Roundup and found that while the original recipe would kill grass and weeds in two weeks, the new version would do the promised job in 14 days.
Now the tie-in.
The Fraziers of Ortonville remembered both columns when they read, then sent, an article from Compendium magazine with the headline, Amphibians ‘croak? over herbicide.
University of Pittsburg researcher Rick Relyea found Roundup caused a 70-percent decline in amphibian bio-diversity and an 86-percent decline in the total mass of tadpoles.
In his experimental pond, Relyea found Roundup increased the amount of algae because it killed most of the frogs. His comparison: ‘It’s like killing all the cows in a field and seeing the field has more grass in it — not because you made the grass grow better, but because you killed everything that eats grass.?
By getting rid of the growth around the pump by the lake I croaked the croakers.
This warning is not among the others on the bottle, though it does say it shouldn’t be applied directly to the water. It also says buyers assume all responsibility, etc. Of course, but so did the buyers of asbestos.
I’ll continue using Roundup because it does kill what I want killed, but like our warnings to small children, it won’t go near my water.
Relyea also said Roundup is a surfactant, a chemical called Polyethoxylated tallowamine. Please remember that. He also said 2, 4-D weed killer had no effect on tadpoles, and ‘It’s fair to say nobody would have guessed Roundup was going to be so lethal to amphibians.?
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Sometimes I thinketh I keep notes too long. A couple months ago son Jim had back surgery at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital in Pontiac.
He had a back operation before, but this time he obeyed the doctors and has much relief. While in the waiting room with Linda, looking for magazines, I read this sign on two magazine racks, ‘Please return magazines to this rack.?
Both were empty.
Jim was told to bring no money when he reported for surgery. Yet, St. Joe’s insists on prepaying parking. I can’t put my finger on it, but I think there’s something conflicting here.
As doctors came in to talk to waiters, I thought of a softer way of telling survivors that their loved one was gone. How about, ‘Do you have a favorite funeral home?? That’s soft.
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First you teach a child to talk, then you have to teach it to be quiet.
Women like silent men. They think they’re listening.
The four seasons are salt, pepper, mustard and vinegar.
Life is like a shower — one wrong move and you’re in hot water.

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