Tuesday, September 13, 2011


Before I tell you this, I want you to know that I will do my best to keep this story from gross-gross-EW--EW-GROSS-GROSSING YOU OUT.  This subject matter is disgusting.

It's about a cockroach.

A female cockroach (don't ask me how I know).

A female cockroach sneaking into my house, I think, in a cardboard box.   

[Here's where I was going to have an image of a female cockroach, but I couldn't bring myself to actually save and then upload such an image here.  I will do gross, but that is too far.  Instead, I will use a picture of Shania Twain, for reasons that will become clear...

...see, not a female cockroach.  In fact, she is lovely.]

As I've mentioned, I need a bed.  So, I ordered a memory foam mattress on Overstock.com, and so, as sometimes happens when one orders from the internets, the item was delivered in a cardboard box.  I got home last night and saw the Overstock box on my front porch and thought: yay!  mattress!  Maybe I'll sleep, like a bit more normally in a real bed?

So, I was not really thinking about cockroaches at that point.  Nope, just happy thoughts of wheee, sleep!  Ohhhh, sleep on a mattress!  

I dragged the 70lb. box with the mattress into the house.  This was kind of a fun part, because the box almost did not fit through the larger of my two hallways:

yes, this is the larger of my two hallways.
this one is 29" wide.
this is going to be a fun game of "How Wide Is Your Hallway?"
every time I try to get furniture to my bedroom.

But so, we kept calm and carried on.  We persevered, and at last, the mattress box was hauled into my bedroom.  I opened the box and pulled the mattress out.  I started reading the information that came with the mattress, and after a few minutes, got distracted by my dog.  She was making the kind of fuss she makes when she wants a walk.  Alright, I said.  Let's go for a walk.  I grabbed my iPod, found my Crocs and my keys, and out we went.

It was a nice walk!  No cockroaches.  (At least, not that I saw.) 

We got back to the house, and I still had my headphones in while I refreshed my dog's water and got her a treat.  Dancing along to my iPod, I kicked off my shoes and decided to clean the main bathroom, which is right next to my bedroom.  I walked out of the bathroom and towards the kitchen to get my favorite quick-cleaning implement ever, Lysol wipes.  Thinking nothing but happy Lysol wipes thoughts, I turned the corner and noticed-- huh. That's weird-- my dog seems to think she's playing a game with something...I followed her gaze...to...

...a long-legged, scrambly-confused, 3-inch female cockroach.

I froze.  

My iPod was playing Shania Twain.  "Don't Be Stupid."*

What am I going to doooooo?  I can't kill it.  Trying to kill a cockroach is like...I don't know, like trying to get a Slipknot fan to give that Taylor Swift a try!  Futile.  100% not going to happen.

Don't be stupid, you know I love you.  Don't be ridiculous, you know I need you.  Don't be absurd, you know I want you.  Don't be impossible...fiddlefiddlefiddle-fiddlefiddlefiddle

After the shock, my sensation was mostly exasperation.  I thought: Really?  I have to dance with a scrambly-confused female cockroach in my bare feet?  With Shania Twain?  at 10pm?  on a school night? when all I want to do is sleep on my new mattress?



Well, I need a tool to dance this dance.  I need a dance implement.

My mind flashed on the the toilet plunger in the bathroom.  I reached around the corner and grabbed it (one of the benefits of a small house-- nothing's far from reach).

I covered Lady Legs with the plunger.  I plunged her.  Up and down, up and down.  

Then I thought-- well but, I'm not trying to unclog her. She's...not a toilet.  What is my next move here?

I scooted the plunger toward the back door, and flung the back door and rear security doors open.  For some reason, my dog ran screeeeaming out the door into the yard!  What? But I focused on Lady Legs and the plunger.  I got the plunger to the edge of the back door, and then tried my hardest to, in one motion, fling-scoop Lady Legs into the great dark outdoors.

She ended up parked just on the underside of the back door step.

Good enough.

I called my dog in.  

She wouldn't come.

Don't be, don't be ridiculousssss, no no

I called her again.  And again, with increasing desperation!  Standing in front of the back step, she could see Lady Legs.  Is that why she didn't want to come in?  She didn't want to walk by Lady Legs?  Can my dog be grossed out by cockroaches?  Maybe earlier, she wasn't so much playing with Lady Legs as she was trying to stay away from her?  

Well, too bad-- she needed to get over that-- now.  Desperate, I barked at her to get in the house before Lady Legs beat her to it.  


She came in.  

I slammed the doors.   


For good measure, I grabbed lemon Pledge and sprayed it under the door.  For better measure, I stuffed paper towels in all the cracks between the door and the doorway.

For best measure, I thanked my lucky stars that the pest control guy had just come for a visit four days previous, and had sprayed the front and back yards with all kinds of lethal material.  This fact gives me great hope that, in the event this was a pregnant female attempting to nest in a cozy cardboard box, she and her progeny will soon get facefulls of lethality and die.  Please, please, please let them die.

And thank you, Shania.  I am really trying not to be stupid. 

[*You SHUT UP.  That is a good song, and if you don't sing along with that song when you hear it, you and I might have to reconsider our relationship.  In my head, this is my karaoke song, but I improvise different lines.  Shhhh.  It's an absolutely amazing karaoke routine, in my head.]

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