Adding Insect Insult to Injury :: CR99 220628

Inspired by Charli Mill’s Carrot Ranch, #99WordStories
In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story about “A Swarm“.

“Insects should not make history. Look at this mess.”

“Damn! The country is trying to rebuild itself after Wall Street. We’ve got 15% unemployment and food riots. Now this – grasshopper swarms throughout Iowa, South Dakota and Nebraska.”

“Actually, these hoppers have metamorphosed into locust. Locusts have stronger wings to fly further.”

“Shocking. This is your map? How can this be possible?”

“Scientists say it’s the drought. It’s already reduced crops this year. A fungus in damp soil normally kills most of their eggs. Without rain, they all hatch and swarm looking for food.”

“We’ll not soon forget July 1931.”

South Dakota Locust damage

Photo credit: – Aug 1933


Dakota Life: The Grasshopper and the Plow

This Day in History… Note, article title has a typo in the date

The Locust Plagues of the 1930s

GW bio card 4

13 thoughts on “Adding Insect Insult to Injury :: CR99 220628

  1. My mom was born in 1931 in Illinois and her family moved several times before coming to CA in search of work in 1940 because of the depression brought on by this drought. Her daddy wasn’t able to find any steady job so was a house painter, carpenter, plumber, barber, cook, and baker. He pretty much did the same in San Francisco while her mom worked in drug stores. This drought, the grasshoppers, the dust that covered the Midwest, the Depression had such an effect on all of their lives and led to them being part of that migration to the West Coast. I think my hearing them talking about those times has made the past few years not as disturbing for me, I understand hard times and I know they don’t last forever.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My oh my – we have similar stories. My grandparents came from Minnesota about the same time and their journey was a reflection of the Grapes of Wrath. They too had stories of the dust and locust. Sometimes I think we have no clue of how hard life can be.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Diana.
      I can only imagine – and hope to never experience such an event first hand. I bet anyone who sat in Sunday school and listened to the story of the locus plagues in Egypt has not tried to form a picture of what that had to be like and what one might do to fight back and defend your crops. I did and could never see a good solution. And to have it happen so soon after the country endured the stock market crash and all the unemployment afterwards – it must have been devastating. My grandparents were close enough to be impacted and their story is much like that told in the Grapes of Wrath by Steinbeck.
      I have nothing in my history that compares with it.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. The last line gives me pause, Gary. How soon we forget once we are no longer the generation impacted. Ironic, too that California stands poised as the next plague-ridden dustbowl. I have nine generations of family in California, but my grandmother on my father’s side came “late” as part of the dust bowl refugees. Her mother died picking fruit.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi Charli,
      Thanks so much for stopping by to engage this story with me. I’m amazed each time I finish one – so much crammed into 99 words.
      I honestly thought this was one project I was going to fail at, but reading the book where (you I think) captured some of the best from previous years and then tinkering has made me much more confident.
      And yes, Calif is a mess. I’m a conservative cynic on this point and suspect wild incompetence and an agenda to keep Calif from prospering.
      I too have roots that go back to the dust bowl times and really – REALLY hope Calif has better days ahead. We’re planning on leaving regardless to follow our kids as much as possible. Our last one to move out is next month and we’re taking her to Michigan..

      Liked by 1 person

    1. True D. it was fairly localized and the huge impact was even partially overshadowed by the stock market crash and unemployment crisis – despite being a huge contributor to the personal impact. I’m glad I wasn’t around to witness it, but lord keep me from forgetting it. Thanks


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