Firstly, thank you to my younger sister for brilliantly rhyming my pain.
Now that that is out of the way…
I must admit, I am somewhat Buddhist about the natural world. I will capture a spider and put it outside (although I learned recently that this practice is not exactly good for the spider, who chooses her environment based on her needs). I have saved a harmless snake from destruction by moving it to safer ground, or by staying out of its way if I’m in its territory.
But for two creatures, I am not so inclined to coexist. The first is the roach (except for the little guy in Wall-E, but in fairness, he’s animated). There is no reasonable explanation for the proliferation of the common roach, other than providing protein for the next link in the chain. However, there are no rodents in my home, so roaches need not volunteer for the position of protein-du-jour by crossing my threshold. When such a terrifying sight as a roach presents itself in my household, I scream like a banshee while running from the scene calling the name of the nearest person I know is willing to kill said intruder. Gentlemen, cue the heraldic fanfare as you enter, riding your mighty steed, sword aloft and save the day for the damsel-in-entomological-distress.
The second evil creature is the common sugar ant, an insidious and annoyingly persistent little bastard. I have tried all manner of discouraging the micro-beasts from entering my home as the rains embolden them to find every poorly-caulked baseboard in random rooms. I do not leave food out. I do not coax them with tiny ant treats. Yet, they have maintained a near persistent invasion, led surely by the ant-sized reincarnation of Ramses II himself.
Pharoah ants are the bane of my existence at the moment. I have tried negotiating, natural oil remedies, vinegar, borax and finally ant traps. They are the Borg collective and they are after my soul.
Finally, when they began biting me, I abandoned my Buddhist love of all things living and started smashing them. In any given sitting in my art space, there may be ten little mangled carcasses after I’ve basically exhausted my commitment to natural deterrents. Less than an hour later, I see ten more, drunkenly looking for a safe route around any chemical defenses I’ve laid out on my desk.
As I descend into madness, if you hear only the word “ant” on my lips, know that they’ve won, that I can no longer battle the force that has more fortitude than any other living creature on this planet.
I hate ants.
Update: I finally won! I found a recipe online for the best ant killer EVER. I doctored it a bit to make it more appealing and sure enough, the tiny creatures come in their hundreds to sample the ant-brosia I concocted. They carried it back to the queen and after just a few days they were gone! The recipe called for Borax, sugar, water and syrup. I raised the stakes with true maple syrup and unbleached sugar. Just a spoonful on a plate is enough to draw them out and tweet their little antennae like bugs possessed. And after about a week, no more ants! (PS, make sure that you add enough water that it’s still sticky but won’t harden.)