Written in response to Harry’s pleas to look up and appreciate the trees that sustain us, as featured in The Daily Mail.
You are so right – right in the way that all fellow gingers are obviously right!
Have been an fan of you, since it became clear from your baby pictures that, like myself, you have inherited the ginger gene from one of our shared ancestors – William the conqueror! Yes, like thousands of us Norman-British hybrids, he is my something-many-times-removed Great Grandfather, as he is yours.
But today, believe it or not, I am not writing to you about our shared ginger gene, MC1R, but about our shared conviction that none of us would be here, whatever our hair colour, if it were not for our good friends, the trees. And I’m so pleased that today, you will be manning a tree campaign on behalf of National Geographic. *
With this in mind then I wish to draw your attention to one of my many quality book reviews (the ginger gene is also associated with genius!). I do so hope that you have read, The Hidden Life of Trees by Peter Wohlleben? If not, then Waterstones is a great shop to make your purchase from!
To focus in on Wohlleben, then the most-memorable moment from his writings, for me, was the part when he relayed a story about a tree stump. This stump, in spite of clearly having been stumped for a great number of years, turned out to still be clinging on to life. The reason for this being, that it was being sustained – as in fed and watered – by its neighbours via a complex system of underground communication, in which fungi, like the receptors and other bits and pieces in the networks of our brains, sent and received messages. In short, then the stump was being nurtured – kept alive by its mothers, aunties, grandmothers and sisters (forget the brotherhood!).
With this in mind, Harry, then I have been kind enough to forward you a number of my best shots of tree stumps and trunk fungi (sorry, my camera refused to go underground), in the comments section of National Geographic on Instagram. Please don’t be stumped by the quality – I only have a Nokia 5, and its pretty c**p when it comes to zooming out for close-up shots but, being human and a ginger, then it does seem that I can’t have it all! (My Jobseeker’s Allowance and redundancy pay just won’t expand itself enough to allow me to splash out on an upgrade!) So, please – keep hold of the pics!
As a back-up plan, because I somehow have a hunch that you have already deleted them, here is another selection of my best! Zap them up!
My favourite (as it should be yours, Harry!) is the tree stump with the uncanny resemblance to my foot!
You have to admit, that even armed with just a Nokia 5, I’m doing my bit for the planet (and for boot-seller Clarks) by the sharing! And, because I’m generous (sorry, Pixabay, will upload these to your free photo site soon), here are a few more of my best tree shots!
I do, of course, have it on the best of authority from ‘The Daily Mail’ that you are interested in trees from around the world; so please note, that the stumps and fungi pics were shot in my homeland of Suffolk, and the other collection, in none other than my birthland of Shropshire – all being snapped on one of my many holiday treks up The Wrekin!
The wind-blown specimen pictured on the top-left of the second collage is particularly rare, so rare that I was unable to identify it in my Collins Gem ‘Trees’ book. As such, I am worried that it might be facing extinction, if not already, extinct – so, if you are able to use your great wealth and influence to assist in the preservation of that species, then do let me know! It does say, in the trusty Daily Mail, that it is ‘essential’ to ‘protect the world’s most valuable assets’.
Although, it is true that this ‘asset’ is so ‘valuable’ it has surpassed identification, I can assure you that it is an antiquity, and it is on its way out; the reason being that the last time I went up The Wrekin, I spotted the same tree and, at that time, it was ginger! As you, no doubt, are about to discover for yourself, then ginger does have a habit of fading to a rusty-brownish-greyish-bark shade, when fully matured!
You will be pleased to hear, though, that I did, do my best to help out by pumping up the groundwork a little with an injection of plant fertilizer. This strategy was, in part, successful, in offering the specimen some temporary relief and revitalisation. Just take a look at it’s moment of crowning glory!
So, yes Harry, I wholeheartedly support your campaign on behalf of the world’s trees, and would urge the rest of my fellow humans to do the same!
Before I leave you, though, I would like to share with you these pics of some dead trees that look particularly beautiful in some of our old churches.
And, as they are already dead, can you please launch a second campaign – this time to stop today’s men** of the cloth from ripping the wooden pews out to make way for ugly modern replacements called chairs.
Why chop more trees down to make chairs, when one’s bum is better off listening to some old dear’s rambling sermon, distracted from the tedium by the aches and pains caused by one’s bottom having to sit for a whole hour on a hard plank of board?
So, please, Prince Harry, hear my plea! Let us, as fellow gingers, unite in our bid to save the living and the dead!
Looking forward to your response. And please note that, as Tesco phoned me this morning to discuss my Dear Tesco letter, then I see no reason why you cannot call me up from Malawi, or wherever else it may be that you are located in to discuss matters further!
Speak to you in the morning!
Jay Cool (The Silly-Savvy Salopian in Suffolk)
* I would be more than pleased, though, in fact I would be ecstatic, had National Geographic chosen the world-famous blogger, Jay Cool, for the post instead. I have my CV out on all the big jobsites, with requests for work – and non-one thought to give me a call! Shame on you, Nat Geo, for a missed opportunity!
** Yes, I know that women are also permitted to preach the good word in 2019, but to my limited knowledge, it’s only the men who want to rip the boards out!
And whilst I have your attention, Harry, do read, like and comment on the following posts: