Monday 12 May 2014


I can’t remember a time when I trusted bamboo.

I suspect my unease with it came when I was researching ancient tortures and found that bamboo was used in some of the more gruesome and painful methods. A bamboo stalk would be sharpened and the person that you needed or wanted to torture would be threaded onto the living plant. If you did it correctly, and I understand that they had quite a bit of practice, the person would live for days and weeks as part of a living forest of torture victims.

Bamboo is very fast growing, 3 to 10 centimetres in a day at least, so my friends the torturers would plant sharpened bamboo seedlings under the victim who would be suspended horizontally above said bamboo. The bamboo would slowly grow right through the poor bastard and again if the torturer were skilled, the person would be in pain for days and weeks. See why I don’t trust bamboo? I don’t like it when I get a sliver.
Normally, a kid born during the fifties in Canada wouldn’t run into very much bamboo in his day to day life. Yes, there were chopsticks, but whenever my family ate Chinese; it was only the odd person in the restaurant that didn’t use a fork. I still don’t understand the preference to use chopsticks. That was pretty much it for bamboo in Canada. Perhaps I may have heard that Panda bears ate bamboo, but the only Panda bears I ever saw would be stuffed, plush toys.
I just finished the dishes, and washed four pastel coloured bowls made of bamboo. We have bamboo plates as well. I thought they were made of plastic which hasn’t been used to torture people for centuries. I can live with plastic, but bamboo? Louise sprang them on me last summer and by the time I found what the plates and bowls was made of; they had taken up residence in the cupboard. I couldn’t say anything without seeming just a little crazy, but I make sure those cupboard doors are tightly closed every night.
It seems that there are a lot of things that are made from bamboo now. I have heard that some of the better quality fishing rods are made from bamboo, can you imagine. Bamboo is edible and I understand that some folk do eat bamboo shoots. They didn’t read the same books I did I suppose. It is used for building scaffolding in many countries and they use that scaffolding to build structures from bamboo. There is some very attractive and durable flooring made from bamboo and most likely furniture. Not in my house, but I’m sure it’s out there just biding it’s time.
Bamboo has been used in the manufacture of paper for centuries and probably the pens to write on that paper. My daughter has bamboo growing in her house! Where my grandkids live! Because she likes the look of it! Crazy woman!

I guess bamboo is here to stay and I should just accept it as a useful part of modern life. I’ve lived this long and haven’t had any problems with bamboo. Maybe it isn’t as evil as I have always thought it to be. Maybe…but I think that just to be on the safe side I will continue to keep my eye on all things bamboo. 

1 comment:

  1. We have two large bamboo plants in our yard, now you've got me worried! You never know what Linda has planned for me..... yikes B