by Stephen Measure
There was once a beautiful backyard with thick green grass from side to side, everywhere except for one small section of the yard known as the dandelion patch, where dandelions bloomed in all their splendor.
One day, the dog of the home decided it wanted a snack. Unable to find any dog treats, it rummaged through the gardener’s tools instead, finding a bag of dandelion seeds, which it promptly tore apart in the backyard, leaving remnants of plastic throughout the yard and dandelion seeds absolutely everywhere.
When the gardener discovered what the dog had done, he was distressed. Now dandelions were going to bloom all over the yard. He was going to lose his job!
One of the garden gnomes observed the fretting gardener. “Don’t worry,” the garden gnome told the gardener. “Those are dandelion seeds. They never grow in the grass. They only grow in a dandelion patch. Everyone knows that.”
“Are you sure?” the gardener asked.
“Oh, definitely. Dandelion seeds growing in the grass? That’s absurd.”
“Well, that’s a relief,” the gardener said, and he promptly forgot all about it.
But two months later, the yard was covered with dandelions.
The gardener looked out at the once beautiful grass in despair. “How could this happen?” he asked the garden gnome. “You told me dandelion seeds wouldn’t grow in the grass!”
The garden gnome, being a garden gnome, didn’t remember the earlier conversation. “They’re seeds,” he told the gardener. “What did you expect was going to happen? Did you think dandelions are magically confined to only a small section of the yard? Where did you get a silly idea like that?”
“Where did I get a silly idea like that?” The gardener raised his hands in exasperation. “That’s what you told me! You told me not to worry! You told me dandelion seeds would never grow in the grass! But they did. They grew there despite what you told me, and now dandelions are everywhere!”
The garden gnome tapped his hollow ceramic head. “Well, that’s what you get for listening to a garden gnome.”