Grasshopper Sex and Evaporation

October 8, 2010

Because there has been virtually no rain for many, many days – and the drizzles we’ve had have been less than impressive – the pond has been evaporating at such a fast pace that I honestly thought we had a leak. These drought conditions have caused the smaller, upper pond to become disconnected to to the lower end, with an isthmus between. The fish were stuck amongst the cattails and couldn’t come play in the sun.

So I dragged the hose out, put the nozzle in the pond and turned it on. Minutes went by when I saw no change in the water level, so I panicked. “Oh, gawd! Not a leak!” Then I realized there was no muck being disturbed, no eddy in the water. That was because there was no water actually going in. There was a kink in the hose still curled on the wall. Fixed that and we were all good!

The pond filled, bringing those fish back up to the small pond, leaping and splashing with joy. Well, not really leaping and splashing, but actually swimming quickly in circles and dart, seeming to rediscover this spot. Maybe they really do have short memories and this was like a big huge birthday surprise to them – or Christmas!

After the pond was filled – no leak means no expensive, muddy, mucky, worse-than-a-root-canal headache – I moved the hose to the hydrangeas in back and then went to the front to see how the Endless Summers were doing.

Oh. My. Gawd. Grasshoppers in flagrante delicto right on my front walk. I have to admire the male, as his passions were obviously for bigger, healthier women, a good way to keep improving the gene pool. Because of the way their faces are built and how the sun glinted in his eyes, the male especially seemed to look at me with a “Really? We’re trying to have sex here” kind of expression as I got closer and closer and closer with the camera.

“Really?” I said right back. “You’re doing it right on the front sidewalk, for heaven’s sake! You don’t think people aren’t going to take pictures of this?”

Her leg quivered and shook during the passion, making me giggle. This is her last big hurrah, so she is making the most of it, I think. She will lay eggs in a few days, on leaves or on tree branches and cover them with a fluid that will harden, making a protective cover. Both her and her mate will die this winter; the nymphs will hatch in the spring.

The grasshopper and ant story appears to be a bunch of malarky, as a grasshopper doesn’t make it through the winter anyway, and certainly wouldn’t curl up with a pipe in front of the fire, grateful to the hard-working ant.

When I moved the hose later, they were both gone, exhausted, spent and fulfilled – or perhaps eaten by a bird, unable to escape the lock of passion.

Now that I’m thinking about it, I wonder if grasshopper sex actually feels good?


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