March 26, 2010
The old saying is that March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb, but apparently in the middle it jumps around like a kangaroo. Just last weekend it got up to ninety degrees one day, and then that night we had a combination of rain, sleet, snow, lightning, and I’m pretty sure we had a hurricane come through too at one point. I’ve always wanted to get lightning and snow at the same time just because I think it would be really cool to see it reflecting off the snow, but the snow melted as soon as it hit. I’m pretty sure that flaming brimstone that came down at one point warmed the ground up too much for the snow to stick. I was having a hard enough time sleeping through all that anyway, but then, around midnight, I heard something buzzing and turned on the light and found a wasp in the bedroom. I’ve often said that wasps are the skinheads of the insect world, but I think that might be an insult to skinheads. Bees don’t like to sting people because for them it’s the ultimate sacrifice. They’ve got to be really desperate to sting because it’s the end of the line for them. Wasps, on the other hand, will sting you just for fun. They’ll sting you just because they can. Deep down, of course, I feel bad for comparing wasps to skinheads because wasps do what they do as a matter of survival, whereas skinheads are just assholes.
Among insects, among invertebrates even, wasps are still pretty big jerks. Many species of wasp kill spiders. Poor, sweet, lovely, defenseless spiders are the killed by wasps. I know many spiders who are so kind they wouldn’t hurt a fl–er, I mean I know a lot of very nice spiders. And wasps don’t just kill the spiders because that would be too nice. They lay their eggs in the spiders and the wasp larvae slowly eat the spiders from the inside. In South America there’s a wasp that lays its egg in a spider’s brain. When the wasp larva hatches it literally takes over the spider’s brain and makes the spider build the larva a cocoon. And it eats the spider while it’s doing this. And what some wasps do to some caterpillars is even worse. They lay their eggs in the caterpillars and when the eggs hatch the wasp larvae don’t just eat the caterpillars from the inside. They eat all the non-vital organs first while the caterpillar eats and eats and eats but slowly starves, suffering excruciating pain. The wasp saves the caterpillar’s vital organs for the very end so the caterpillar’s suffering is drawn out as long as possible. You may not think caterpillars are very nice, but they do eventually turn into butterflies, and I’m willing to bet that no butterfly has ever stung you or anybody else, even if it wanted to. I know some caterpillars turn into moths, and I’ve heard moths eat clothes, but I’ve never actually found any moths in my bedroom. Even if I did I’d rather have a hundred moths than a single wasp.