Wednesday, May 19, 2010


Western Texas has a type of weed, that we refer to as "spear weed".  It is about four inches long and when you pull it out of its base, you see a very sharp little spear at the end of it. (see picture)  Anyway, the kiddos just love it.  You can throw it and it will feel like a needle prick and it sticks in you clothes.  It is like "gold" to children, in some areas of the state.  I have fond memories of it, as a child, growing up.  We thought we were Indians on the Range, hunting down our next victim.

Well, a young boy named Mike, came up with a very brilliant business venture.  He decided, that while the other kids were playing after school, he would begin gathering all the spear weed he could lay his ambitious little fingers on, and so he did.  After gathering the weed, then came the packaging.  Of course, he used his mother's zip lock bags, I mean, why pay for packaging when you can use someone else's?  So Mike, got all of his weed packaged and ready for sale.

Well, today he put the final step of this, well thought out plan, in motion.  He went to school and began selling the bags of weed to anyone with the right price.  He was shrewd in his business dealings.  He was a man's man, and a ladies too!  He stuck his chest out proud.  His plan had worked and the money was rolling in.  Soon, he could set back and sip punch in the shade.  Maybe get an extra candy bar or hot dog.  There was no limit to where this could take him.

Then, from out of nowhere, as he was day dreaming about other ventures, he felt a hot sweaty hand around the scruff of his neck.  Yes, it was the principal!  He had not planned for this, at all!  It was a nightmare, or he was hoping it was, but it wasn't, it really was THE PRINCIPAL!  She said, "Mike, what are you doing here and what do you have in those bags?"  Of course she already knew 'cause principals are sneaky that way.  Well, Mike looked her right in the eyeball and said, "I was just selling spear weed." 

Now, I know, by now, you are probably snickering and thinking all sorts of things, but this story is true.  You heard me.  It is true!  Mike, age twelve, is one of my seven grandchildren.  My daughter informed me of this just today.  I laughed so hard, I thought I was going to pee my britches.  Hope you enjoyed.  I know I did and here is my daughter actual email message when she informed me:

"Hoping this is not a vision of things to come, but Mike is currently in the principle's office for selling baggies of spear grass. Spear grass is a wild grass that grows out here that has these little spears on them that the boys throw at each other. It feels like a needle pricking you. They picked them all at school and so Mikey seized an opportunity to make money by picking all of the ones at home and selling them in little bundles. The principle called and said she was holding Mikey for selling baggies of...(at which point all the blood in my face drained...those are words I never want to hear)...when she said spear grass, I tried not to laugh.  I need to write a book called A mother's grey hair...the stories behind each grey hair!

BTW, we now call Mike "Mafioso" because he is always doing "business" of some sort. He will buy these candy things that come 6 for a dollar and sell each one for a dollar. He buys mechanical pencils 5 for a dollar and sells them for a dollar a piece. He will find whatever the kids have interest in and buy it or collect it and sell it for far more than it is worth because the kids will pay it. I'm hoping this doesn't lead to selling baggies of crack or some other money maker. Geesh!


  1. Love this kid! He is brilliant and a hard worker! (I'm thinking it takes a lot of work to gather the weed, sort it into bags, etc.) Sad that the principal put a damper on his enthusiasm and entrepreneurial spirit...we need more kids who are THINKERS and then put those thoughts into ACTION. I don't think you will ever have to worry about him selling anything bad, John. He sounds like a great kid who is ahead of his game! Heck, I'd buy a bag of spears from him. We loved those mean little weeds when we were kids too!

  2. Thanks Karen. All seven are good kids. Yes sirs, no mams, please, thank you, always. They live in a very small West Texas town & my daughter's a good un'. Oh, and so is her husband, working two jobs, to keep them fed and in clothes.

  3. Nice post and this fill someone in on helped me alot in my college assignement. Thank you seeking your information.

  4. Hey, glad I could help out a budding college star.

  5. I grew up in Texas and spear grass was the highlight of my play time. I used to pick it and bag it and try to sell it to my friends so we could ambush our other friends. I saved them the trouble of having to pick one by one, when they could just grab a bunch and throw them all at once :) Ahh good memories- one Texas speciality that I miss.

  6. Not just rural. We had it in Houston when I was a kid. (They probably still have it.) We'd pull them out of the stalk, lick em', and throw 'em at each other. (Sorry, parents. Hope I'm not getting something started with your kids, but it's mostly harmless fun.)


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