(Charles Platt is a guest blogger)
In April 2005, while driving with my significant other on Arizona back roads near the California border, we noticed some clumps of strange orange stuff, like candy floss, tangled in normal vegetation. Some kind of fungus? A parasitic plant? A toxic byproduct of industrial waste? An alien life form scattered by black helicopters? We never did figure it out. It was fibrous, like string, and seemed to have no root system of its own. It appeared within a matter of days and was gone by the end of the summer. During ten years of traveling around, Arizona, I've never seen anything like it.