Conversation I had with my neighbor, Crazy Old Driveway Guy, the other day:
CODG: "You know, those are ash trees in your front yard. We used to have some in OUR front yard. You oughta get some of those purple bug traps, before the beetles take them over."
a. They are not ash trees. They are locust trees.
b. The "beetles" he is referring to are emerald ash borers, which are infesting ash trees. Just not in our neck of the woods yet. And the "purple bug traps" are specialized devices being set out by the DEC, in an attempt to track the borers' progress. It's not like you can go to Agway and buy one. I think he had the ash borer traps confused with Japanese beetle traps.
c. The emerald ASH borers are infesting ASH trees. I do not have ash trees. I have locust trees.
Okay! Back to the conversation:
Me: "I'm pretty sure they're locust trees, not ash trees."
CODG: "Nope, they're ash trees. We had some in our yard."
Aside: After I bought the house, I got a tree book out of the library to identify the trees in my yard. The willow was obvious, but I did not know what the trees in the front were. As I found out from the book, they are locust trees. They are not ash trees. One difference between ash trees and locust trees is the amount of individual leaves in each ... cluster or whatever the hell you call it ... and these are locust trees. LOCUSTLOCUSTLOCUST.
Me: "Oh, well, I guess I'd better go get some of those purple traps, then! For my ash trees! Thanks for the advice!"
I think I've finally got this dude sussed. He has to be right ALL THE TIME. And if he is NOT right (see the driveway saga), he will just keep blustering through, until you finally agree with him, just to be nice, and to avoid watching him stroke out from the thought that he might be wrong.
Look. Dude's eighty years old. He knows nobody's gonna contradict his crazy-ass ideas. He knows he can say whatever the hell he wants to, and nobody's gonna tell him he's wrong. And I'M not gonna be the one to push him over the brink. As much as I might like to, I am not going to be the one to say, "Hey, look, gramps, you're full of shit. Jeezus Christ, what a f*cking MORON." He's basically a good guy. So I just nod and smile and go along.
His plan is working.
He's a damn genius.
They're f*cking LOCUST trees, dammit.