It’s Springtime again and the insects are coming! The insects are coming! They hatch from their little alien egg-sacks and peer up at the house lights. “What’s that, Mama,” they ask? “It is the mecca, my children. A place of warmth and all the tasty blood you can get.”
Inside the house I’m examining every possible entryway, bug-proofing the doors with weather-stripping, placing ant-traps by the front door, hanging citronella ornaments on the porch, and pouring some kind of $80 anti-drainfly liquid down all the drains. I place tiny business cards by every window that read, “No Trespassing: This means YOU,” in Musca-dominestica, Arachnidian, and Mosquitoese. Kirby follows me through every room and cocks his head in a concerned way like I’m crazy. “And you my friend,” I say to him, “are getting your Heartgard pill just as soon as I get through with this blasted sink.” He wags his tail delightedly as this translates as, “Wha-wha-wha-wha-TREAT!-wha-whah.”
Meanwhile, the newly hatched sniper-force outside have matured a couple of hours and are laying-out their invasion plans. I planted a mini-microphone out in the lawn and this is what it picked up: “Emergency! Everybody to get from street.”
So I add Russian to the list of languages on the business cards. And yet, despite my warnings, they come. Hey! I have cordoned off the boundaries, built the great wall, posted the signs, armed the guards, and set my guard-dog on alert. They have been thoroughly notified. THEY HAVE BEEN WARNED!
Here’s the rule: Anything outside the house (minus mosquitoes), I say, “Live and let live.” I let them build their nests and burrow and creep and crawl and slime and fly to their many-chambered dorsal vessel’s content. But enter my house—cross THE BOUNDARY—and it’s all out war. You do not cross the boundary! I’ve posted signs! I’ve placed scented markers (Citronella) for those who can’t read. And basically, I’ve resigned myself to the fact that I must harden my heart and be the lawkeeper in this town of mine if order is to be maintained.
Below each “No Trespassing” business card I add, “Cross this threshold and you’re a dead bug. No Mercy.” I add a few pictures of their deceased kin, just to drive the message home. Then I spray it with a bit more citronella.
This morning in the shower—(You’re already getting that nails-on-chalkboard feeling, aren’t you?)—I turned toward the window from rinsing my hair and gazed into the multiple eyes of a young wolf-spider with a personality. He would have fit quite nicely on my fourth fingernail if this didn’t gross me out so much. I stepped back. He didn’t move except to follow me with his gaze. I moved to the left, he countered. To the right, and again. We were tangoing in the shower.
So,… either he was scared out of his wits—which I would be if I caught a glimpse of me in the shower—or he was a reincarnated peeping Tom with really poor taste. Oh, my gosh! And he’s charging admission! Two more!
That’s it guys. Say your prayers. You are gone; dead; se cabo; muerte. I don’t believe in torture. I always make it quick and painless. They never know what hits them. And really, in the lifespan of a bug, they only have a few more hours-to-days to live anyway. Right?
This is the rule of the crabby home when it comes to insects. I am a benevolent lawkeeper, quick to dispense justice as it is outlined. Yup. That is true for every insect or arachnid… except mosquitoes.
Mosquitoes and I have a special relationship. There is something about me—something in my blood chemistry—that calls to them on a primal level. If there is a pregnant female mosquito within a mile of me, she and all her compatriots are moved by the disturbance I make in the Force. The Force is strong with me. I have read that I am not alone in this, that there are others who share my gift. But I have yet to meet anyone who possesses this rare, inestimable quality. Truly, it is beyond estimation the expenditures in calamine lotion and Benadryl my parents and I have invested in Johnson and Johnson. Or, were it possible to estimate (and somehow litigate) the cost of a hundred sleepless nights while writhing from the quarter-sized welts these sloppy diners leave behind after their bloody feast, I would be wealthy beyond reason.
Indeed, were it possible to sue the mosquito population at large, I would call to bear the experience at camp after an overnight hike: The one where they had to call in a nurse from the nearest town to administer a shot of whatever it was because I had been bitten so severely that I went into a fevered delirium. That was fun. So much fun. I can’t even begin to write about the extensive fun of that entire experience!
So, when I see a mosquito… Oh, excuse me. Correction. When I HEAR a mosquito—because really, isn’t that one of the most annoying sounds on this planet? I’d rather be stuck in a room full of chalkboards with a dozen dull-clawed cats in need of a sharpening planted in front of each board, having been given a full serving of grass so that the screeches are only punctuated by the sounds of cat barfing, than to hear the high-pitched whine of a mosquito in my ear.
It is the one creature on this planet that I would eliminate entirely if there were a means to do so. Yes, their entire species. Thankfully, this is not within my power, because it would cause a tremendous upset in the entire ecosystem of this earth. This is the main reason why I put up with the messy-mess the little swallow chicks leave under their nest by my door because they LOVE to eat those mosquitoes. Mmmm-mmm! Bless them!