Oh, my darlings, it’s been a very long time since I’ve given any love to those of you who adore your shrooms. Fortunately, I’ve got a coworker who finds some fabulous ones, and had a good camera on his phone, and he’s sharing the love with you.
He hit me square in the squees with this beauty of a fly agaric he found up by Canyon Park.
One thing I love about all of the mushrooms around here is how fairy-tale they all seem. I may be an atheist, but that doesn’t mean I don’t delight in the stories we tell each other about magic and mystery and mysticalities. Kenny found some fungi that make me want to photoshop fairies in.
Get into the misty wet woods, and come across a bunch of mushrooms marching up a tree, adorning it like jewels, and you can almost believe you’ve stepped from the mundane world into a rather more interesting one.
The beauty of being an atheist is, I know that magical world is our really-real one. I don’t have to do anything special or complicated to get there. I just have to find a path into the woods and follow it with my eyes open.
Then forget fairies. There’s the natural art, of course – mushrooms can be remarkably beautiful. And we can use them to feed ourselves, or kill, or go on a trip, or treat illness. We can use them to dye fiber, or soak up toxins, or start the fire we’ll use to cook some of their mates. We can use them to read ecosystems. That’s all pretty remarkable stuff. Mushrooms have many stories to tell, and while they may not be quite as sparkly as a forest full of fairies, they’re captivating.
And I’ve got so very many to share with you this winter.