When I was growing up in Arizona, we lived right on the very edge of the Tohono O'Odham reservation in the Sonoran Desert. Every year after the brief rainy season, these things sprouted like crazy.

My dad used to send me out, as soon as I was big enough to hold a shovel, to break the root of each weed and clear a path out to the road. I hated these things and each one was basically the preferred hangout of rattlesnakes, so it was like work and a nice deadly game of chance all in one.

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