Through the ages and across cultures, spring has been a metaphor for life and its renewal. All the vital forces of the universe are captured in a single blushing cherry blossom. Whether we ever stop to ponder this or merely find casual delight in the trees now erupting into bloom, or the fields of daffodils dancing at their feet, we see the vernal world as being reborn and fresh. Except nature’s party this year seems just plain wrong. A saucer magnolia abloom is as off as someone whistling at a