Some of you may remember Bugzilla, my new roommate and the
adventurous sleepless night we had.
(If you don’t know about Bugzilla, this story won’t make sense. Go ahead and read the link above, then come back. We’ll wait.)
It’s been almost a year and a half since Bugzilla’s last appearance. He must have kept to himself all that time, coming out only when I wasn’t around. Until a couple nights ago…
Around 10 p.m. I was getting ready for bed, collecting my book and phone to bring into the bedroom with me. I got dressed for bed, which is to say I was scantily-clad. I returned to the kitchen to shut off the light, and there on my counter was Bugzilla!
Apparently, he couldn’t wait one second longer for me to leave the room and shut off the lights.
Bugzilla is no longer afraid of the light. Even worse, Bugzilla is no longer afraid of me.
He scurries back and forth across the front edge of the counter while staring at me, as if marking out his territory. Meanwhile, I stand stock still, trying to decide how to try and kill him this time. I’m standing there watching his every move, mentally recounting the many unsuccessful methods I’d previously employed to try end his scurrying life. I have a can of Deep Woods OFF (with the strong bug-killing chemical DEET, also toxic to humas) on the same counter he’s protecting. (I’ve been using it to kill sugar ants, but that’s another story!) Perhaps it will work better than the hair-spray.
I’m debating if I can get to the can of Deep Woods OFF with DEET before he does, when HE LAUNCHES AT ME.
He deliberately flew right into my naked stomach. I screamed. I screamed and jumped around, brushing at my body with my hands. Yes, I’m a girl. You’d have screamed and jumped around, too, if a big bug flew at your naked stomach!
I look around, but can’t see where he went. I grab the OFF with bug-killing DEET from the counter and head to my bedroom where I call a friend. I am not staying the night with Bugzilla on the loose inside, and Pye is out for the night chasing bugs outside instead of earning her kibbles by protecting the inside of the house from bugs.
I’m about to leave the house for the night. Then Bugzilla appears near the floor, in my path. I spray him with the bug-killing chemical DEET.
Yippee! Direct hit!
He flies at me AGAIN! Another calculated hit to the stomach. WTF? (This not a good testimonial for Deep Woods OFF with bug-killing DEET. I recall it had NO effect on the Texas Coast mosquitoes. I thought perhaps they had become immune to it, and rather considered the scent of the spray an indication there was a tasty human nearby.)
I hit Bugzilla with the spray two more times, both direct hits, but he continues to fly around unfazed. Meanwhile, I’m getting deja vu. And I’m getting toxic-to-humans DEET all over my house.
Finally, sensing I won’t spray DEET on my cream-colored, pleated fabric, non-washable RV shades, he lands on them. We both rest for a minute, debating what to do next.
After a couple minutes, I notice he’s preoccupied with cleaning his face and antennae. Could it be the DEET is working?
I decide to capture him in a Tupperware. Risking the possibility of crushing the pleats in my non-washable RV shades, I grab a plastic container from the cabinet and move it over him. Amazingly, I’m able to get the container in place over him with little fuss. He realizes too late what’s happening, and wildly tries to get out as I slide the lid under and capture him!
I captured Bugzilla! But I don’t know what to do next. Each possbile way I think of to try and kill him has a flaw. I need something that is guaranteed to work. Adding anxiety to the situation, the lid I’d grabbed to cover the Tupperware is not the one that fits the container, it’s bigger so I can’t snap it shut. I place Bugzilla, now in his new home, back on the counter he so coveted and place the can of OFF with DEET on the lose lid to hold it down.
I know! I’ll sell tickets to see the World’s Biggest Cockroach, like at a carnival! “See BUGZILLA! The world’s best groomed cockroach!” Hey, I never said I was well.
Then I leave for my friend’s house. I’m still not staying the night with Bugzilla in the house.
I wake up in the bug-free safety of my friend’s house, and have breakfast with bovines.
I returned home that afternoon only to find Bugzilla had died. Perhaps the OFF with bug-killing DEET worked after all.
Now I can get back to trying to kill sugar ants. Unlike everything else in Texas, they are the smallest bug, at least the smallest that I’ve ever seen. But they are harder to kill than Bugzilla.