Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Summertime, Fireflies and the Green Machine

It's firefly season! We have been seeing them for a month now and they never fail to make me smile.

Summer childhood ritual.

They start glowing just as it starts to get dark outside. We see them in cornfields, ditches on the side of the highway, and patches of woods next to truck stops. Silent fireworks every night for free!

They aren't much to look at when they aren’t glowing their little hearts out. A small, plain beetle that would go unnoticed in the daylight, really puts on a show around dusk. And it's all about sex.

I'm glowing because I'm happy to see you.

Hundreds of them gather in an area to flash and glow, trying to get some lightning bug action. The males flit around flashing their abdomens in a macho way, while the females gossip about who has the biggest flasher. When a female is suitably impressed by a lit up Lothario, she perches on a blade of grass and flashes back to him, in her best come hither manner. If she's not in the mood, she doesn't flash, so the males can't find her. It's always ladies night in the Lightning Bug Lounge.

If you listen closely, you can hear Barry White
singing softly in the background.
Learn more here.
I hate to hit them as we're driving, since they make me so happy, but they do leave a pretty awesome streak of glowing goo on the windshield as they die.

*Side note*
All this glowing green reminds of the coolest thing I ever had as a child; the Green Machine. A thousand times better than that pansy, the Big Wheel, the Green Machine had stick-shift steering and racing slick rear tires that made me the envy of the neighborhood.

Don't hate the player, hate the game.

Not just for guys who like to race really fast Marx Toy Company!!


  1. I don't recall the Green Machine era

  2. Fireflys are real? I thought they were just another fictional woodland creature like gnomes, fairies, and koala bears.

    And as a former Big Wheel owner, I'll admit it; The Green Machine was engineering marvel that made the Big Wheel look like a piece of cardboard duct taped to roller skates.

  3. Thanks for brining up the Greenn Machine... that thing was the best... My kids love the big wheels but now my son is into battery/gas powerd devices...

  4. Thanks for making me all excited and fuzzy feeling inside with the firefly story and facts. I saw some working girls in VEGAS with the same technic and yes it works like a charm! YES the "Green Machine" was the coolest alongside stretch monster who was also green, Oh ya and obviously "THE HULK", my real father!!!

  5. COOL bugs! We have none of those up here in WA, but we do have a lot of phosphorescent sealife...which is equally cool.

    I did not know about the green machine, since I'm sure I'm quite a bit older than you. I only had your standard tricycle when I was a kid. BUT, I REALLY wanted a Tonka dump trunk & front-end loader like the neighbor boys had. Never got those, but I did finally get the electric train...

    Fun post - thanks, Tumbleweed!

  6. Doug, Oh yeah, I was cool back then!

    Christian, Fireflies are indeed real, unlike the Koala, which is a pure myth, made up by people who talk funny.

    Heywood, The new stuff doesn't even come CLOSE to the cool factor of the Green Machine.

    Glen, I bet the working girls in Vegas don't leave green glowing goo when you rub them on your arm...nevermind, they proabably do.

    Ladybug, Nature comes up with the coolest stuff!

    Thanks everybody for riding along!

  7. I miss lightening bugs...we don't have them here. You might be reminded of the green machine, but I can only think of my glow worm. I used to hug it all night when my mom made me quit squishing the asses off real lightening bugs to use for wedding rings.

    Doesn't mean I'm not envious of your fine ride though. Seems like you've always had a more bitchin' rig than me!

  8. Our fireflies were a bit delayed this year, but they're finally beginning to light up. I think the cicadas scared them away. Or maybe ate them.

  9. M. That would be the best wedding ring ever! Well, if it didn't involve the mutialtion of a living creature!
    It's been downhill in the cool department since the Green Machine, I'm afraid.

    Sharyn, cicadas can be pretty scary with all that noise they make, maybe lightning bugs have sensitive ears!!

    Glad to have yall riding along!

  10. i think i'm too OLD for the green machine era...BUT i do remember those from when my boys were kids...but by then i was a little too big...darn!
    but hey! fireflies!! yeah!! we've seen a few here and there...but not like when i was a kid...up north...the summer nights were glowing like crazy!
    in know too well...the only GOO we get on the windshield is LOVEBUGS! and they don't glow damnit!

  11. Laura, oh yes, I do remember lovebugs! You should see our truck in the spring time when we're down south. They make such a mess of the windshield, we can barely see through it!!


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