The War on Poison Ivy
Will poison ivy ever go away? Short answer: no.
Today, I want to talk about the evil little bastards known as poison ivy (Toxicodendron radicans) and, by extension, its evil cousin, poison sumac (Toxicodendron vernix). Not everyone in the world is susceptible to these plants, but I can say with all scientific fact and proof that my husband and I make up for their lack of an allergic reaction. Over the last few weeks, we’ve been in a war.
The poison ivy did a few airstrikes and sent in some ground troops, and it was successful in winning the Battle of the Bastards … oh wait, that’s me dreaming of being in Westeros.*
* In my mind, Westeros is a place much like the Garden of Eden.
Poison Ivy is so insidious that it can grow anywhere. And when I mean anywhere, I mean anywhere – it can spread on the ground like the fun, happy ivy (I can this ivy “The Snake Pit”), up trees, up the side of your house, through other weeds, and even within the grass.
What’s worse is that it’s hard to kill. We learned the hard way that you need to wear a ton of clothing, and preferably you throw it all out** after each use.***
(I recommend a hazmat suit.)
But, with everything in life, the right tools make the job a whole lot easier. In this case, we needed to prepare better for battle. So, we bought gloves that are really entire suits made out of plastic. And boots. And two miracle products – one called IvyX (which we bought in a gallon-size jug … you can never be too prepared, folks) and Bentonite Clay.
Cuz you'll need it:
And some more uses of jewelweed:
Actually, both products are bentonite clay. The IvyX is just in a lotion form. Lots of cosemetic products have this stuff in it, like sunscreen and foundation. And this absolutely wonderful clay mask called Mint Julep that I have been using for, like, forever. I’m fairly certain my mother used to use it on my buttocks after pooping in my diaper,**** that’s how good it is.
My husband bought several large gallons of RoundUp. Which is a good soldier against poison ivy, but not a super soldier. They don’t make stuff like they used to.
Who knows what this war would be like. Like Afghanistan, my husband and I might be up in arms the next 20 years, at which time, the poison ivy will become someone else’s problem. (Does one need to disclose a poison ivy war to the next potential home buyer? Hmmm.)
** Don’t throw out your clothes because I am just kidding. You wash your stuff with detergent.
*** But seriously, I’m contemplating throwing out everything in my house except my dog.
**** I say this because the stuff looks like baby diaper poop. Without the smell.
The Book Promos
This newsletter, I am happy to show you the Alex Payne thriller series by Audrey Walker. The book is titled Payne.
This is an FBI thriller, available to read for 99 cents or for free with the Kindle Unlimited. You can get two months free or right now, Amazon has a 6 months special running for $30 (that’s half-price)!
Some of these links may be affiliate links. Thank you for your support!
For whatever reason, Revue decided not to publish what I wrote my last newsletter’s Happenings section. Now, I am sure that you were waiting with baited breath to know what I have been reading lately, and you were devastated when you couldn’t know.
The last few weeks, I have been reading Dreamsongs I and Dreamsongs II by George Martin. Yes, that’s the guy who wrote The Game of Thrones. I’ve been mostly interested in how a hugely popular fantasy writer got his start (he has some awesome memoir-style sections) as well as what a fantasy short story even is about. I’m so used to those Bible-sized fantasy novels like Tolkien writes, and this has been a nice change of pace.
Several of these stories are science fiction, which I am not interested in writing (or reading). But one story titled “Ice Dragon” is particularly cool. You can see that he had the concept of Game of Thrones all the way back then. For fans of GoT, you will definitely see the connection there.
I’m thinking of writing a series of fantasy short stories and novellas next – some exclusive to this mailing list, and others for sale on Amazon. They would all be set in the same world, and the overarching story would develop as each one went along.
Let me know what you think!