I found myself thinking about John Price’s book Daddy Long Legs at work this morning. Specifically, I found myself thinking about the essay “Praying Mantis, or How I Became Jim Fowler” from that book as I became Jim Fowler (of Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom fame) too.
The reason I was thinking about this was that I helped out a praying mantis. The “Praying Mantis, or How I Became Jim Fowler” involves Price rescuing a praying mantis from the window of a Chinese buffet restaurant at the insistence of his son.
Though I have no son to insist upon mantis rescue, I happened to notice a praying mantis on the granite floor of my office building lobby on the way up to work. I had no idea how it got in, or what it was even doing in downtown Denver, but I was pretty sure it was going to get squished pretty quickly there. I noticed it, but I was betting not everyone would. At the very least, I was sure that the floor of a highly trafficked office building held nothing of value for the mantis.
So, I got a notepad from security, scooped it up onto the notebook, and set it on one of the planters outside.
I wasn’t squeamish about touching it, but I was betting that mantis was probably relatively fragile. I didn’t want to just grab him and risk ripping it up.
Now, I probably didn’t help out the mantis as much as Price. After all, I just took the mantis to a planter outside. Price had taken his mantis to his acreage, where it would likely be as safe as a mantis can be. The middle of downtown Denver isn’t optimal for a mantis. However, I had no wooded area to take the mantis too. That planter outside had to at least be safer than the lobby floor inside.
Now we just have to hope for the best for the mantis.