Independence Day

Epipremnum aureum. Common names: Pothos, Ceylon creeper, Devil’s Ivy, and many more.

Devil’s Ivy, image of E. aureum from Wikipedia

Derived from the Latin Vulgate meaning that which grows and spreads like wildfire yet can thrive even in dark closets.

This amazing plant has sprung up in every restaurant, airport, hospital, dorm room… everywhere, and the obvious benefits of such a plant are well…obvious!

They add a sparkle of green and yellow to the decor; they easily spread to cover a large area; they can be used to accent not only table tops, but counters, shelves, bookcases, and in ancient times they even put them on either side of the portcullis of a castle.

But what we’re concerned with today are the health benefits of the Pothos. As with any chlorophyll rich foliage, the Pothos is responsible for contributing to our ability to live and breathe and thrive and do all the things we like to do on this planet (and maybe even other planets or moons in the future).

Without the Pothos, oxygen levels would be in serious decline, and in a post apothosalyptical world would be sold on the black market.

This is the point where this journey entry really gets going…

Oxygen. A commodity of rarity. Packaged and produced in bottles, cans, spritzed and non spritzed, and vacuum sealed for your freshness. As a diminishing resource, Oxygen, no longer being substantially produced by the dwindling supply of Pothos, would be the hottest thing on the shelves.

For those on a limited budget, we present Basic O2. A standard level of quality and purity as regulated by the government. Limited additives and preservatives – just your basic breath of air. Not fresh air. Just air.

For those on a diet whether Keto, Atkins, South Beach, East Beach, or Santa Clarita, we offer Diet O2 (also known as O2 Lite, or Zero Carbon O2). Of course if you want full flavour top shelf Oxygen, and are willing to pay for it, you’ll find O1. O1 is all the goodness of O2 without the gassy aftertaste.

And then the marketing really kicks in. New O2, Cinnamon O2, Diet Black Cherry Vanilla O2. Gluten-free O2. Sugar-free O2. Low glycemic index O2. O2 now with no added fat. Cholesterol-free O2. Low sodium O2 now with added B12.

All of this could happen were it not for the Pothos.

Obviously we can’t survive as a species without this precious plant. Today, they are so abundant that their relative value and cost is next to nothing. Any resident of our planet with $5 can go to their neighborhood Target/Wal-Mart/Kmart (well not Kmart unless you live in some remote location where they haven’t gone out of business) and pick up a Pothos.

But just imagine… what if we suddenly ran out of Pothos, or they evolved to only grow in one remote sector of the world.

They’d become as valuable as diamonds, which as we all know are just bits of compressed carbon, which as we all know is the 19th most abundant element on our planet.

Soon you could only buy the rare and endangered Pothos at the DeBeers Exotic Pothos Emporium. But it’s not that easy. You’ve have to first get on a waiting list, and the only way to get on the waiting list would be to call a special phone number at a special time, and hope to not get a busy signal (they do not have call waiting).

Let’s assume you get through to someone at DeBeers, and then let’s further assume that they put you on the waiting list, you would still have to pass the rigorous Pothos Ownership Operating Test. Not only does the POOT have a written exam, but also an oral exam, home inspection, and you’re required to sign a waiver allowing DeBeers to reclaim the plant in the case of neglect.

There are probably those of you out there who think “I’m safe. I already have several Pothos at my house, so I don’t ever have to worry.”

Unfortunately, that former president guy signed an executive order before he left office authorizing the military to enter any personal property and seize any live Pothos on the premises. The law is actually so all-encompassing that they can seize dead Pothos as well, or force you to search your own garbage for any that you may have thrown away.

No one is safe from the existential threat of Pothos extinction.

Except for the very, very rich. Anyone making over $500,000 a year is exempt from the new law, of course. Heaven forbid we deprive the rich from their double half-caf, half-decaf O2 with a twist of lime (oooh I’ll have a twist of lime too!).

The middle class should just learn to be happy with their SunDollars O2 Au Lait, right? For those of you who aren’t bilingual, Au Lait means with milk. That’s French. Which means that if you travelled to France and wanted to have some O2 with milk, you’d have to say “Au Lait” instead of “with milk” otherwise they wouldn’t understand you, because no one in France is bilingual. Be careful about using this term in other countries such as Mexico or Spain, or they might send a bull charging after you, because Au Lait is surprisingly similar in sound to O’le! (I learned this the hard way.)

Unfortunately, there are no Pothos in France so I don’t know why anyone would go there anyway. Except maybe to see La Toure Eiffel, which means Eiffel Tower. But you can see pictures of that online, so again I ask what’s the point? I’d much rather go somewhere and see something that no one has ever seen or taken a picture of.

For instance, a remote cave in the middle of a vast line of underground caverns that maybe hasn’t even been discovered, and maybe contains a vast cache of Pothos growing wildly and abundantly, creating so much O2 that if it ever escaped from the cave it would throw off the balance of the entire global O2 market sending O2 stocks crashing down and ensuring quality breathing air for anyone on our planet, turning billionaires and other rich folks into ordinary middle class citizens within minutes. (this reminds me of the Great Chopsticks Incident of 2004)

It could happen…

* This commentary is based on the Award-Winning Best-Selling Novel by the same author, and in no way supports or defames the holiday of Independence Day, because it has absolutely nothing to do with it.

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