Rhubarb’s “sick beats”

I had to check that this wasn’t an April Fools joke.

For the record, I’m still not 100% convinced.

Still, keeping that disclaimer firmly in mind, how’s this for a story?

EVERYONE’S ALWAYS GOING ON ABOUT the sound of the leaves rustling in the trees, but if you want your mind blown by plant sounds, check out rhubarb growing in the dark.

Forced rhubarb, which is made to mature in near total darkness, grows at such an alarming rate—as much as an inch a day—that it actually makes squeaks, creaks, and pops as it gets bigger. It makes for sweeter rhubarb, growers say, and sick beats.

I used to live just a short distance south of England’s infamous 9 square mile Rhubarb Triangle, where rhubarb is/was grown in large, low sheds in near complete darkness:

But I didn’t know that it made sounds as it grew.

And look, I dispute the whole “sick beats” thing, although with modern music sampling technology and a vague modicum of talent, I’m sure someone could use this as some sort of basis for a surefire dancefloor hit.

It sounds like iGentle conversation in isiXhosa. What do you think?

No-one tell Skrillex. God, please no.

On the plus side, if this is what the young people are listening to these days with their youthful Hippity-Hop music tastes, then they should hear my aching bones getting out of bed each morning.

A click-and-pop fest of note.

Coming to a club near you, real soon now.

Chances of world peace “not great”

You probably didn’t need me to tell you that, but if there is any value in symbolism, then the fact that a pair of white doves released by the Pope and a couple of children (careful now) in St Peter’s Square over the weekend were immediately attacked by crows and seagulls should probably confirm the fact that we’re in for continued global conflict.




Hmm. Let’s all hope that Steve Hofmeyr avoids finding any further symbolism in that image.

It appears that the symbols of peace did at least survive. Probably, anyway:

One dove managed to break free from the gull, losing feathers in the process, while the crow repeatedly pecked at the other dove.
It was not clear how badly injured the doves were as the birds eventually flew off.

There’s precedent (and some really poor English) here though:

The almost exact same thing happened last year at the same event, which is always held on the last Sunday of January, when a single gull attacked the released birds.

Which, all in all, demonstrates a perfect metaphor for the current global situation right now. Next year (assuming we’re still here) I fully expect them to spontaneously combust upon release.