Sunday, May 26, 2013

Defend the earth

Yesterday when I was outside spraying the mosquito nymphs with windex (their wings get wet and plastered to the walls and they die lowly bug deaths on the outdated vinyl siding), I detected a chilling shape out of the corner of my eye. I would know that creature anywhere.A chill ran down my spine as I whipped around, realizing that my fears were true, and one of the world's most despicable insects clung to the wall, plotting and brooding, only a few feet away. This was the vile, decrepit, hairy creature know as....the house centipede.

It was just hanging out on the wall in the shadows, gross and eerie and with its grossly long and uneccessarily numerous legs. Probably waiting for an opening to jump on me and cause me to have an anyerism.

My first encounter with a house centipede was while in a study session for organic chemistry. It crawled across the rug at such lighting speed that it made my skin crawl. The fact that my first encounter with this creature is forever linked with organic chemistry forever curses it in my opinion (and vice versa, I suppose).
Later in life, I occupied an apartment that was also occupied by countless stealthy house centipedes. (Needless to say, this was the first and last time that I rented housing from my graduate institution.) At first they only came out from under the rug when I vacuumed, but as my first year in grad school wore on (and on, and on) they became bolder, coming out and sticking on the walls just for their own amusement at my panicked horror. I remember one night having already taken my contacts out, subsequently rendering me effectively blind, and seeing a shadow on the wall just the right size and shape.... when I alerted my then-boyfriend of the pest, he knowingly denied that's what it was, just because he knew he'd never be able to catch it and thus there would be no consoling me.

I'm not this creeped out by all bugs. I don't mind bees, or spiders (I know they're not INSECTS but 'bugs' is a less specific, more colloquial term and so I hold to it). House centipedes are just so darn FAST, plus they move like something out of a horror movie. Actually they're somehow reminiscent of the gross alien bug in the first Men in Black. Do-gooders have told me that these monstrosities are good and hunt and kill other bugs, but unless they're taking on and munching on, say, child pornographers, I don't think its worth having them around.

I've surmised that this demon does not lay eggs, but that adults instead ascend directly from the fires of hell. Not only is the house centipede abnormally large for an insect living in a temperate climate, its extremely resilient and is known to survive uo to five minutes of frenzied stomping. Although entomologists inform ne that this many-segmented creature is harmless, I'm understandably distrustful of entomologists and suspect that house centipedes not only have poisonous bites, but also heat seeking missiles (how else would they catch and kill all these bugs they allegedly eat??)

On that fateful night when I came eye to eye with the beast, I mustered my confidence and my window cleaned and sprayed the bejeesus out of it. Unlike the forsaken mosquitoes, the centipedes was unhurt and merely fell off the wall in fright. I was unwilling to stomp it as it lay curled on the porch, lest it have its fangs ready, but I sprayed it several more times, and with trepidation, went inside. The next morning, the bug was gone, leaving behind only a memory and the faint scent of Windex cleaner. But I know it's out there somewhere, watching, and plotting its revenge.

posted from Bloggeroid

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