i may seem slightly preoccupied with bugs these days.
To be more specific… it might seem i’m more than slightly preoccupied with COCKROACHES who are another category of “bug” altogether.
There are bugs that border on cute, like ladybugs or that bug in A Bug’s Life (which is still one of my favorite Disney/Pixar movies and i have all the McDonald’s Happy Meal toys because someday they are going to be worth millions. They better. They are the only retirement plan i currently have) but even in the cartoons you never see a cockroach character because cockroaches are universally agreed to be horrifying and will cause nightmares in small children, that’s a fact.
First, there was the incident with the Bu-Zombie. THAT un-dead little motherbugger stayed in our building’s hallway on campus for DAYS. Every morning i obsessively checked and made note of the slowly decomposing exoskeleton lying deceptively still against the wall, staring at me with its one squished eye and waiting for the right moment to spring up and shake its bent antennae and squeak, “Brainsssssss……I need brains…….!”
But it never did. And then one day i forgot to check – distracted by something largely made of sugar – and didn’t remember to check until after 3:00pm when my sugar coma wore off.
It wasn’t there.
i missed the big Bu-Zombie Awakening!!!!
Or, maybe our University’s disgruntled janitorial staff finally rode that mini Zamboni floor vacuum thingie over that dang dead bug and scooped it up.
Either way, i was now on kind of a cockroach high alert with that giant zombie bug taking up my mental space. It was the largest roach i had ever seen, (i have only seen 4 in my entire life, but that was DEFINITELY the biggest of them!) and i still couldn’t believe a bug here in the Bay Area could get that big.
Oh…i was so naiive. How i long for those innocent days before i experienced an even bigger one Fall. Out. Of. My. HAIR.
Yeah. You heard me. MY HAIR.
Picture this: it is early one Monday morn. REALLY early – like 5:00am. It is my typical wake-up time… i do yoga and intense meditation every morning. (Ok, ok.. “yoga” may be a stretch for what i do which looks and sounds more like a groaning baby elephant trying to get up off the floor by twisting and flopping around and finally giving up and falling back asleep on the yoga mat, snoring, until something jars me awake so that i can meditate.) (And ok, ok..”intense” doesn’t really describe my meditation..which looks more like a baby elephant sweating and straining to sit in anything close to a lotus position but really ends up in a sort of half cross-legged position that puts my legs totally to sleep minutes before i fall asleep, snoring in unison with my recording of Tibetan monks OHMing.)
THIS morning, i staggered out to the kitchen to start the coffee before my yoga/meditation/nap and as i propped myself up by leaning on the stove, i yawned and ran my fingers through my hair. And then something on the stove moved.
i casually looked down at the stove and there, lying on its back on the ceramic stove top was ANOTHER humungous cockroach!!! It was wiggling its legs and sort of back-hopping in circles, trying to regain an upright position.
And i froze.
Well, i shrieked in terror first and jumped back about three feet, but THEN i froze.
And then, as the horror dawned on me, i realized two things:
1. That big ass motherbugger is ALIVE and doing everything it can to right itself so that it can scurry away or possibly TOWARD me with its too-many scurrying clicky feet and its freaky long antennae wiggling and i think i just threw up in my mouth a little bit….
2. It must have fallen Out. Of. My. Hair.
Kill me now.
i had a cockroach in my HAIR???
i then partook in one of the most dramatic and violent OMGTHERE’SABUGINMYHAIR dance anyone on this planet has ever seen.
– i hopped from foot to foot shrieking, “It was in my hair! It was in my hair!”
– i slapped my head with both my hands over and over trying to knock out any of his little roachie friends that might be hanging back watching the show.
– i may or may not have given myself a black eye.
And no more little buggie friends fell out.
i started to calm down, feeling a little silly at my roach-induced spontaneous Footloose show, when i realized Mr. Bug was still wiggle hopping on the stove trying to get upright so he could come attack me and eat my brains and i began to freak all over again. i hate killing anything, but there was no way i was going to do the whole flip-the-empty-plastic-container-over-the-offending-bug-then-slide-the-lid-under trapping thing. i just couldn’t deal. What if it my attempts at humane catch-and-release just ended up helping him get upright and loose in the house? Remember the Giant Spider Incident of 2015?? No. i’m going to have to kill that motherbugger.
i consulted my inner Buddhist pacifist but he had jumped up on his fluffly lotus couch and was holding up his robes, screaming, “Forget Namaste!! Kill it!! JUST KILL IT ALREADY!!”
i grabbed the closest thing i could find, an empty plastic cup, and before i could think of the crunchy sound it was gonna make when i squished it, i slammed the down on top of Mr. Soon-To-Be-Dead bug.
And it didn’t crunch.
i picked up the cup slowly and peeked. It was still alive!! It was still wiggling and didn’t look like my weapon of choice had even dented his eerie exoskeleton.
i slammed it down again. And again. Nothing. That bug just wasn’t gonna die without me getting personally involved and opening up a can o’ whup ass on it.
So, i acted before my brain could catch up or my gag reflex could kick in and i took a huge handful of papertowels and grabbed the roach and SQUEEZED.
There’s the crunch.
The gag reflex caught up.
i squeezed harder because by god if i’m gonna crunch a roach with my hands it had better be DEAD and then threw the wad of paper towels, bug and all in the trash hoping with all my heart that sucker had crossed the rainbow roach bridge ‘cuz i wasn’t about to look and check.
The MAN couldn’t sleep with all the noise and eventually did come out to check on me (and make sure there was coffee made.) i launched into my story about the giant roach on the stove. When i described its monstrous size, he poured his coffee and calmly told me that’s one of “those water beetle kind of roaches” as if that makes any sense or any difference at all to me and then when i launched into a dramatic reenactment of my reaction at finding the “water beetle roach” right under my face and the subsequent OMGTHERE’SABUGINMYHAIR dance, he chuckled and patted my head like you would to a humorous pet and said, “there’s no roaches in your hair,” like HE would know, then left to go read the news in the living room.
So now i am obsessively yelping “water beetle” exterminators and seriously considering reliving Sinead O’Connor’s (pre-Pope picture destroying) glory days.