Posted on July 12, 2005 by Jenna

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It is good to blow on ripe dandelions.

Their petals go everywhere!

Sometimes people blow on unripe dandelions.

This is dangerous. It’s not like blowing on ripe dandelions. It’s not safe. You shouldn’t try it at home.

Blowing on unripe dandelions is extreme. It’s the blood sport of childlike wonder. It’s frolicking in the fields—taken to the next level!

That’s not just the rhetoric of the dandelion cult.

One time in five hundred, when you blow on an unripe dandelion, it is not the seeds that scatter but the accidental qualities of your own existence.

One time in five hundred, the person who blows on the dandelion ceases to be and ceases ever to have been.

Many of the most wonderful people in the world met their ends in this manner.

There was Antijohnny Planetseed, the great negative space man whose footfalls left suns and planets in their wake. He blew on an unripe dandelion. That was his mistake!

There was Edna Porrins, whom you never met. She was ordinary but really cool if you talked to her a lot.

There was the angel Ogliel, who guest starred regularly on network television programs to remind people that angels are real.

Now they are gone, almost without trace, leaving only little echoes, little marks, faint imprints of metaphysical history etched onto the fabric of the world.

There were hundreds of them. Thousands. Endless thousands.

The world used to be much bigger than it is.

Once there was even Brad Morgan, who was probably pretty ordinary, just like Edna. He blew on the unripe dandelion, so we’ll never know.

“That’s why, in fact,” he said, as he puffed and he puffed, unmaking himself with slow statistical inevitability.

“That’s why?”

“No one will know how cool I could have been. Maybe I was the best. And each person gets to say—this is official Brad Morgan talking here—that I would have liked them. That I would have seen the good in their heart and loved them for it.”

And that’s the gift he gave you, by never having been.

But it’s not just him.

It’s all of them.

You can tell by the traces and the echoes.

They all would have liked you.