Saturday, August 7, 2010

On Defending One's Family

If you've read my blog for more than a day and a half, you probably have at least a small idea of how I feel about bugs. To recap: I kind of hate them.

And you know the kind I really hate, right? Yeah....That would be the buzzing kind. I feel as though I've covered this in great detail in past posts.

And now I will delve into what is terrifying me at this very moment. Causing my heart to race, my skin to feel hot and shivery and prickly, my head to feel tight. It's what's causing me to glance up from my computer every 3.5 seconds to ensure that I am not being stalked. It is what is under this box.

See that box? Under that box is some sort of EXTREMELY LARGE buzzing flying insect. I don't know what kind exactly.

What I do know:

1. It's stupid.

I know this because as I was relaxing on the couch, reading Stephen King's On Writing, I heard a VERY LOUD buzzing sound. Since the window in the living room was open, I assumed it must be large bumblebee or something on the other side of the screen. I tend to jump to these kinds of conclusions because they help me keep my sanity.

When I glanced up from my book, you know - just to be sure, I saw a black blob of doom with wings fall to the floor NOT 10 FEET from where I was trying to relax. Bastard! It landed on its back and it was all black and shiny green underneath and it started to shimmy the way really stupid flying beetles are apt to do when they can't turn over. Because they are so stupid.

2. It's probably dead.

I grabbed the closest large object I could find, the Lego box, and laid it on top of the writhing, buzzing horror. But the box was empty. Nowhere near heavy enough to squash a bug dead. The box started to move around with a scratching sound as the thing underneath was trying to claw its way out.

I would have smashed the box and all that survived underneath it with the child's guitar that was nearby (can you picture it? classic.), but both the empty Lego box and guitar belong to our little cousin, Jack. Whose house we are staying in at the moment. Because we are homeless rock stars who just moved back from Iowa. We have been rotating around our family's homes since we got here a month ago. We feel like rock stars because we have a wonderful extended family who missed us and are so glad to have us back that they are each willing to put us up for a week or two while we find our footing. Thank you, family! We love you so much!

However, there is a small possibility that all that good will might come to a screeching halt if I start smashing up their stuff.

So, instead, I carefully loaded some very heavy books into the box through the side opening and pressed down.

And then I pressed some more.

And I slowly backed away and hoped that the thing was dead. As I stared at that box for signs of life, I knew that I needed to have some closure. Because that box would torture me for the rest of the day if I didn't (Is that thing still alive? Is it crawling out to get me?). And, also, because I fancy myself a little bit of a bad-ass.

3. If my children even come this close to accidentally moving that box I will freak out and they will be in the Naughty Corner until the end of time.

As I see it, that box is basically keeping us alive. But it doesn't matter, because Peyton and Ella are busy sorting Jack's Star Wars Lego people. For fun. They are totally my kids.

They are blissfully unaware of our situation. That is really, really good. When I see a scary bug I am able to scream on the inside. Peyton and Ella do not have that ability. Flying bugs elicit screams from my children that rival the screams of stupid people in slasher films. Also, the other day Ella discovered the teeniest, tiniest little spider ever in the history of the world on a stuffed animal and she cried about it for the next 30 minutes.

What I don't know:

1. How did it get in the house?

2. How long has it been in the house?

3. Did it already slither into my ear and lay its eggs while I slept?

4. What was that noise just now????

5. Did the box just move while I wasn't looking at it????

6. Am I going to be able to get up the courage to look underneath that damn box? For the safety of my family?

Yes. I am. But first I needed to call my mom. Because she's not afraid of bugs. She actually thinks they're beneficial. My mom's really smart about most things and I love her more than anything but on this issue she's CRAZY. So I call her so that she can talk me through this. Also, she'll know to alert the authorities should something happens to me while I'm defending my family,.

My mom doesn't answer her phone. Super awesome, Mom.

Plan B: "Kids! Come here for a second! Okay, you see that box? There's a really big bug under there. I think it's dead, but I have to check it out. Wanna watch?"


See that? That is some Parent of the Year crap right there. I use my kids to make me brave. I make it a game: Watch Mommy Slay the Beast.

I don the appropriate bug-buster safety gear (the kind that covers my whole body so that nothing can land on my skin), grab my weapon of choice (Real Simple magazine because it's super heavy), and I let Peyton take a picture of my attack face:

And I lift up the box and Peyton says, "Woa! That is humongous! Disgusting!"

See that? Confirmation from a 6-year-old. I'll take it.

Then he decides to measure it (Brave boy! When did that happen? Probably when he realized the bug wasn't really moving):

I scoop it up and take it outside. I am feeling pretty brave myself.

And then Peyton says, "Mommy, I'm proud of you for doing that."

What can I say?

I can't really say much as I'm too busy puffy-painting "H E R O" on a t-shirt for myself.


4kidsgrandma said...
Here's a page o'beetles with your bug, a fig beetle, perhaps. We used to find them in our pool.

Ali Richardson said...

Ummmm.yeah.I think the crazy bug population followed you back from Iowa! You mush not have driven fast enough in a zig zag pattern like I instructed you to. Ugh!

lfhpueblo said...

I am so afraid of bugs. It didn't help that my mom was bitten by a black widow and was super sick for 3 full months when I was young.
Even with medications she kept having muscle spasms and couldn't stand to lay down to sleep. She slept for 3 months sitting up in a recliner. The doctor said if it had bitten her any higher up (top of her leg) that she might have died. We took the dead black widow in a sandwich bag with us when we got her medical help. They said it was the largest black widow spider they'd saw. They even called a teacher at the college who studied bugs so he could have it for display.
Where did the black widow come from probably from the wood pile my parents had, for the fireplace.
My dad made sure to get it all sprayed so there wouldn't be anyone else getting bitten.
Now in my own home, I am constantly have to get my garage treated because they like to make nests in there, and one poor dog (Lili) died from a black widow spider bite.
I truly hate bugs, and spiders more than anything. Yet tied with spiders are snakes.

Darcy said...

4kidsgrandma - I think you're right! The size and loud buzzing sound that they describe on wikipedia sounds about right! Thanks!

Darcy said...

lfpueblo - oh my Lord! That sounds so awful! I would be scarred for life!

Darcy said...

Ali - I know! I shoulda listened...

jflannery said...

Now go puffy paint a plastic frame for that bug-buster picture. Girl, you crack me up with your bug insanity. The TV can't even drown out the locusts signing outside my window...even with my windows shut since our temp is 113 at 8pm. Iowa misses you.

Amy said...


Tracy said...

You were brave, I would've smashed the box anyway, just to be sure... casualty of war! And I would've had big boots or tucked my pants into my socks... I have a fear that if I get too close to bugs or spiders with loose pants, they might crawl up them! Yes, it happened to me once...

Caramama said...

My mom had to come to my rescue recently, but SHE answered the phone (bless her). I had a yellowjacket buzzing around in my house that wouldn't land. I can (barely) manage to trap them & fling them outside if they stay still, but this one wouldn't. After 20 minutes I was almost in tears - despite working hard to be brave for my 4-year-old son - & called my mom. She came all the way to my side of town and sprayed the evil thing with Pam until it suffocated. THAT is my new tool for dealing with evil bugs. If you spray them with cooking spray (or aerosol hairspray) they can't fly or breathe & you can squish them or scoop them up. Then you just have to clean up the oily spot... but I'd rather have a stain on the wall than a yellowjacket on the loose!

I have to add that I AM pregnant. Surely that excuses my wimping out, right? Even though I'm 35? Of course it does.

Hope my tip helps you.

tracy4 said...

Your are too too funny. I laughted so hard I had tears in my eyes as I read....Then....I saw the bug!!!!!!!!

Katy O said...

oh man... i was dying laughing reading this, because i have totally wrapped myself up in a hoodie like that when there is a buzzing insect in my house! lol! and then i almost jumped out of my computer chair when i saw that bug. blah!


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