Murphy's Law

[The Palmetto Bug Gang]

It was 6:59 a.m. I was taking it easy (read: sleeping) until my ride came. All was peaceful and quite. Then it happened!

Dinnng-donnng! WHAM WHAM WHAM! Dinnng-donnng! WHAM WHAM WHAM! Someone was at the front door, and it wasn't my ride either; he just honks. So, I awoke (as who wouldn't) and answered the door.

“It's that time of month again!” said the person at the door. “I'm here to spray for roaches! i'll let myself in, thank you!” He let himself in, and started to spray this noxious smelling chemical throughout the house, and I kept thinking to myself “This is mom's doing. I can put up with the haircuts, but this is too much,” as I walked upstairs to my room.

You see, my mom hates roaches. And not without good reason; we had to move from our old appartment because of roaches. Okay, flee from our old appartment because of roaches. Well, actually, they gave us an ultimatum, but I'm getting ahead in the story.

This all started a few years ago when we were living at our old place. At first, there were just a few roaches here and there, and a can of RAID was good enough to deter the roaches.

But (like in those 50's B-grade science-fiction horror type movies with special effects from “El Cheapo F/X House”), all of a sudden, these HUGE roaches moved in. These belonged to the infamous Palmetto Bug gang. Life because a living nightmare.

We tried Raid; it didn't work. One day I came home to find several roaches sitting in the kitchen snorting Raid and muttering “What a trip, man.”

Using a hammer on the roaches didn't kill them, it only made them angrier. A sledge hammer would have done the trick, but mom didn't feel it was worth the expence of repairing the floor, counters, walls, etc. after whacking a roach.

Then I read an article saying that caffiene was a natural insecticide. So, we poured coffee grounds behind the counters, under the refridgerator, anyplace a roach might hide. It didn't work. The next morning, we found several roaches hanging around the coffeemaker drinking coffee made from old grounds.

So, mom tried another approach: lizards! She read an article on how several families have a pet lizzard that eats roaches. Therefore, the next time a lizzard ran into our house, instead of catching it, she let it roam around.

A few weeks later, I found a small pile of bones with a small note attached to them in the kitchen. The note said “Thanks for the lizzard. It was delicious. Keep them coming. The Palmetto Bug Gang.” When I showed her the note, mom called the Exterminator!

He was never seen again. All we found was his bug spray and a little note saying “Thanks for the exterminator. It was delicious. Keep them comming. The Palmetto Bug Gang.”

Within the hour, mom had located a new townhouse, and by the next day, we had moved.

So now she has this exterminator come once a month to spray the roaches. And it works, too. In the five years we have lived here, not one roach has appeared, but not because the bug spray the exterminator uses, but because that stuff smells horrible. If I were a roach, I wouldn't want to live here either, that stuff smells!


There was no title given to this one.

I had learned early on not to title my columns, as they never bothered to use the titles I supplied.

This column also has the best line I think of all my columns.

And for what it's worth, I had originally written:

We tried RAID; it didn't work. One day I came home to find several roaches sitting in the kitchen, snorting RAID and muttering “What a trip, bug [the insect equivient of man].”