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My Little Mayberry: “What’s Bugging Me”


Published: August 17, 2012 • By: Denise Denton-Rinzler

You can tell the season by the critters showing up.  Ah ha! Multitudes of insects.   Must be summer.  Flies are swarming around horses and dogs like mini Atilla the Huns.  Yeah, I know, they have fantastic multiple eyes with 360 degree vision that scientists swoon over.  Can be kind of cute when they’re washing their faces with those little front legs.  But they need to learn a new behavior and quit dive bombing humans after sitting on nasty stuff.

The tiniest of ants, I heard someone call them “piss ants”, are invading the kitchen and bathroom each morning.  I really hate killing ants.  They are so industrious, working for the good of the colony and bravely exploring a world outrageously bigger than they are.  But ant- flavored sugar in my coffee just  isn’t my cup of metaphor.

Whiteflies think my poor little vegetable garden is their personal market.  They suck the juices out of everything green, the little vampires.  Sure, I’ve used  yellow sticky paper.  I imagine them mocking me.   “Hey Joe – why don’t you take a sniff of that yellow rectangle over there? Ha Ha Ha.  Have another snoot full of this melon vine!”

Mosquitoes.   Some common California species can fly up to 10 miles from their birthplace.  They all seem to fly into my yard.  Must be a sign reading, “yummy blood here”.   I wondered when we first moved to town why people said “Oh good, fresh blood.”  They meant for the mosquitoes.  It’s reported only female mosquitoes bite.  Doesn’t seem very lady-like to me.

Dragon flies are darting everywhere.  Eat mosquito larvae. Can fly 36 mi per hr.  Glad I wasn’t around when their ancestors, the Griffenflies  (Meganeuropsis permiana), skimmed around on their 28 inch wingspans.   Like dodging model airplanes.  I would’ve had to stay in all summer.  Just me and the ants.  So much for what’s bugging me!  Got to go out and Webster the spiders. ■