11 September 2011


Every day, I reflect on all the different kinds of pests that can invade houses:
Rats. Now these are just terrifying. Last time I came across one of these in someone’s house, I jumped sky high and screamed so loud that I got scolded!
Mice. They are not nearly as scary as rats, because of their smaller size. But they can be terribly annoying. Earlier this year, we were having a lot of trouble with mice in our kitchen. They ate into my 25 lb. bag of rice, so I had to get a metal canister—they couldn’t get through that! They even attempted to infiltrate our jar of peanut butter by chewing their way all around the lid. They didn’t get in, but in the morning we found a jar of peanut butter with a mauled lid and countless tiny pieces of chewed plastic inside the cupboard. Our mouse troubles were over, however, after we invested in a few mousetraps and caught 3 mice in the space of two weeks.
Cockroaches. I’ve already written about some of my adventures with these little guys. My main problem with cockroaches is that not only are they insects, and not only are they black insects, but they are also quite large. That’s just not a good combination for any house pest.
Ants. The problem with ants is the sheer number of them. I remember birthday parties where we had to set out the food just before the guests came and clean it up the very minute people were done eating in a futile hope that we could prevent the ants from descending upon us in droves. They came anyways, for the stray crumbs that escaped our brooms.
Rainbugs. Oh…these guys are pretty horrible. I honestly do not know what they are called in standard language. My family always called them rainbugs. Once a year, or maybe a few times a year, during a cool evening, these insects would come flying into our house through every nook and cranny they could find. We would frantically stuff towels in the crack between the door and the floor, but it was always too late. Within minutes, our house would be full of these flying creatures, and there was usually nothing left to do but to go to bed. When your eyes were closed, you could pretend that your room was not full of small insects flitting around erratically. In the morning we would always wake up to find that all the rainbugs were dead and wingless. Dead insects and wings would be scattered all over the floor and we had to sweep them up. We were glad that this only happened once or twice a year.
Box Elder Bugs. This spring, our house was infested with these black and orange little guys. Again, the sheer numbers made these bugs intimidating. Relatively few actually made it into the house, but outdoors, Angel and I found them constantly clustered in large groups on the yellow siding of our house. Maybe they were attracted to the color, I don’t know. It’s more likely that they just wanted to pester us, I think.
I embark on this daily exercise of thought because my home has recently been invaded by an uncommonly large number of crickets. Angel has killed quite a few, but their continued presence is undeniable. Crickets are neither terrifying nor very intimidating. In fact, I distinctly remember reading several children’s books that had a cricket as a protagonist. I don’t really like them in my house, but I would prefer cricket invaders to all the other invaders that I listed above. This is precisely why I think about all the other pests I’ve had experience with over the years. Yes, it can be irritating when at six in the morning an invisible cricket begins chirping incessantly, but that’s livable. When I think about rats, cockroaches, and rainbugs, I’m so grateful for my crickets.
Anonymous said...

Never heard of rainbugs. The thing about crickets or atleast the ones we have is that they are very dark black.