Friday, April 4, 2014


Now that it’s spring, something I absolutely detest is about to reappear and make my life less peaceful. I’m talking about bugs.

I truly believe bugs have a sixth sense about which people dislike them the most, and those are the people they pick as their targets. If I’m standing outdoors in a crowd of 200 people, you can bet the wasp flying by will zero in on me and come to rest on the tip of my nose.  Or if I pick out a spot on the ground and sit down, every ant within a 10-mile radius will come running so fast, you’d think I’d been dipped in chocolate.

I’m convinced that bugs carry little GPS tracking devices into which they program, “find Sally,” so they’ll know exactly where I am at all times.

The other night, it became clear to me that my bug-free days are numbered. I pulled open my underwear drawer and when I reached into it, a big black spider jumped up at me.  I screamed and ran. When I finally caught my breath, all I could think about was that if I didn’t get brave and get rid of that spider, I could end up sharing a pair of my panties with it.

So I rushed out to the kitchen and grabbed, of all things, a hammer, and returned to the bedroom. I then proceeded to hammer everything in my underwear drawer. My goal was to eventually find a squished spider somewhere in the pile of my unmentionables.

The thought also occurred to me that while I’d been out in the kitchen, the spider could have crawled out of the underwear drawer and at that moment was making a beeline for an even better hiding place. So I hoped I wasn’t pulverizing my bras for nothing. 

Finally, I stopped hammering and gathered the courage to check through the drawer in search of what I hoped would be spider guts.  I put on rubber gloves and lifted up one piece of underwear at a time. There, in the back corner of the drawer, I spotted the spider’s corpse. It was perfectly intact, however, which led me to suspect it probably had died of cardiac arrest…from trying to avoid the hammer.

I’m not exaggerating when I say bugs purposely seek me out. A perfect example happened back in December when I attended a Christmas concert at a church in Epsom.

I had a front-row seat and was thoroughly enjoying the singers’ angelic voices as they flawlessly harmonized in a series of hymns and Christmas carols. During one particularly uplifting solo, where the audience was so quiet, you could hear a pin drop, I suddenly felt something crawling up the side of my neck.

My first impulse was to scream, leap to my feet and frantically swat at my neck. But not wanting to make a spectacle of myself, especially during such a heartfelt performance, I remained perfectly still.

“It’s winter!” I told myself, trying to keep calm. “There’s fresh snow on the ground outside!  What on earth would have survived that storm – the Abominable Snow Ant?  You’re just imagining things!”

But when I felt whatever it was on my neck making its way up to the side of my face, I couldn’t deny the inevitable.  I wasn’t imagining anything. It was real. The only problem was, I had no clue what “it” was. My mind reeled, imagining everything from a tarantula to roaches and bedbugs.  I began to squirm in my seat.

The thought also occurred to me that my unwanted visitor’s next stop probably would be my hair, where it easily could hide out for a while, as if it were in a jungle.  So I gritted my teeth and prayed for the woman onstage to end her solo soon, so I could swat at myself without being a distraction.

The woman launched into another chorus.

The thing crawling up the side of my face arrived at my temple.

That did it. I couldn’t bear the torture a moment longer. I reached up and brushed at the side of my head. My visitor went flying through the air and landed on the floor right in front of me. It was a big black cricket.

I know that some people think crickets are fascinating creatures that have melodious chirps and bring good luck.  I’m not one of them. I think crickets are, well…really creepy.  I figured this cricket picked me out from all of the people at the concert because it had ESP and knew I thought it was ugly, so it was out to avenge its species.

Once the weather warms up, I guess I’ll have no choice other than to learn to put up with all sorts of annoying little things that fly, crawl, sting, bite, slither and jump.

So I hope no one will form a lynch mob and come looking for me when I say I’m hoping the cold winter weather will hang around until at least July.


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