An Epic Battle; There Will Be Songs…

Some of you know that I have a major aversion to bugs. I don’t care whether you want to call them insects, arachnids, pests, or anything else I hate them. I don’t care that they pollinate flowers or that they feed other nasty flying things that do whatever with the ecology, they can all just leave and get away from me. At the very least they can stay out of the house or other places, which leads us to this epic tale I tell on this Easter Sunday. Not being the religious type, I thought I’d regale you with a tale of glory and honor; be amused.

by Liz Henry via Flickr

Last Monday I was driving home from an evening out. The sun was setting and all seemed beautiful in the car. That is, until I heard the unmistakable sound of a loud buzzing to my left. Since to my left was my closed window, I knew this couldn’t be good. I have great peripheral vision so I expanded my field of vision and saw something large by my shoulder.

In my past I’ve driven off the road whenever I’ve encountered something in my car, or even if it might be outside of the car. I don’t even like looking at bugs, so my response has always been to jerk away first and ask questions later. But I’ve worked on that over the last few years, realizing that the last thing I need is to have a heart attack because of some stupid bug and having people laugh at me while I’m laying in a hospital bed.

In my brief yet controlled panic I pushed the button on the car door to lower the window. It slid down and I braced the steering wheel just to make sure I stayed on the road. Once the window was down I noticed that Mr. Bug, and I knew it was some kind of wasp, seemed to be hanging onto the rubber at the bottom of the window. Eventually though, it blew away, and all was right with the world as I raised my window. I applauded my bravery, then wondered if it had actually gone outside the window. The back window of my car doesn’t lower, otherwise I’d have lowered both. However, I heard nothing, and when I got home & took a quick look I saw nothing; all was right with the world.

That is, until Wednesday, when I’m driving home from a lunch outing. I hear that same familiar buzzing in the back, and looking into my rearview mirror I spot the monster beast on the back window.

Now I’m panicked because the back window doesn’t go down, I’m on a regular street instead of a highway with no place to pull over because I’m in the wrong lane, and I’m wondering if it remembers how I tried to get it to leave a couple of nights earlier.

Eventually I find my way to a parking lot, stop the car and jump out. I now have to look and indeed, the ugly beast is there on the window near the top. My first thought seems brilliant; open the back door and it’ll just fly away. I open the back window; nothing. It’s not leaving; what the hey? I thought bugs liked being outdoors; not this one.

Now I figure I have to find a way to get it to go. I start knocking on the window with my hand, which, for me, is still fairly brave even if it’s on the other side of the glass because I always imagine these things somehow have the powers of The Flash and can vibrate through solids. My hand knocking does nothing except make my knuckles hurt.

Time to find something else to help me. I decide to go to the trunk for my snow brush, something anyone living in the north has, and I have an extra long red metal one. I come back around and start knocking on the window with the brush; nothing doing. I realize I’m going to have to knock the sucker off the window, so steeling myself to what I know will be an attack of retaliation, I start swatting at the thing with the brush side. What it does is crawls up further into the rubber where I can’t reach it; oh come on!

Time for more desperate measures. I need spray. I go to the trunk and start looking around, only to discover I have no spray of any kind. What happened to my window cleaner? What happened to the can of compressed air I always kept for emergencies (remembered later I used it a couple of years ago; guess I’d best replace that). I don’t even have any bottled water to try to throw at it; what am I going to do.

The genius in me finally hits. I have a small can of car smell spray that I bought at Bath & Bodywords. Actually, I’m not sure if it’s for the car, but it’s what I use it for, every once in a while, spraying the rugs in the car; I love scents.

But this was war. I also knew the range wasn’t that great, so I might have to get closer, and without gloves and with shaky hands, this was going to be risky. I get my little can, go into the cave of the horror, and start spraying. The first few hits get all over the window; the fourth one hits the monstrosity, and for the first time it leaves its lair. I hit it a few more times; it doesn’t like the spray. Then suddenly it launches itself, and as I duck I see its bulk heading off somewhere away from me.

I quickly close the back door, jump into the car, close my door and raise my window, take a quick look to make sure it’s not going to try to follow me, and take off. I’m winding the car around in the parking lot to confuse it, then I drive home; isn’t that how you’re supposed to shake a tail?

I get home, close the garage door, listen for the sound of buzzing, and realize that I, a mere mortal man, faced off against a dangerous foe and came out the victor as it beat a hasty retreat. I thought about it for a brief moment, then realized that I could state the famous Klingon battle cry, “There will be songs forever sung of this day.”

I’m just waiting to see who’s going to write the song for me. 🙂

18 thoughts on “An Epic Battle; There Will Be Songs…”

  1. Wow I have to say I think that you have an unhealthy fear of bugs. I understand though when a bug is on me my stomach quickly turns into a knot. Great job on dealing with the bug.

  2. I hear the scratching of the bards pens on parchment as they compose great odes to the bravery and heroism of The Wasp Warrior.

    (And I can just imagine what the wasps wife will say to him when he comes home covered in perfumey spray!)

    Great tale sir!

    1. Thanks Alan. I wonder how long that sucker’s been in my car. Yup, it’ll have some serious explaining to do, and I hope she smacks him around for messing with me.

    1. Dude, saw a picture of the spider and had to leave. I’m serious, even pictures of bugs freak me out. You’re a Jimmy Buffett fan; who’d have guessed. lol

  3. I don’t really think that anybody like bugs. Actually my grandpa used to have bee farm, so I am pretty much fine with bees, even being stunk by bees many times, which is really good for immune system of course if you are not allergic. However 3 times almost had an accident with insects – first time try to kill some kind of bug on my car window and I almost lost control of the car, second time a wasp stunk me when i was driving a motorbike and the 3rd one absolutely crazy, putting my motorbike helmet and inside the helmet there was one of the most venomous spider in Asia. I think I was lucky in all 3 close meetings and I am sure if I wasn’t probably I would not write this comment now.

    1. Carl, I find them all nasty and disgusting and as I said, I wouldn’t miss any of them. Had an encounter with a spider earlier this evening; man, I hate that! lol

      1. I hate spiders, actually for few days there is infestation of ants at home at I live on 9th floor, wow.

  4. Mitch, I had a minor accident when I had left the windows of my car open accidentally in the night, and while driving to the office next day I found a lizard just above my head, I panicked and the car ultimately landed in a ditch! I had minor injuries but car was badly damaged.. Had I not panicked, things would have been different!

    1. That’s scary Cathy and I’m glad you didn’t get hurt badly in doing it. I fell in the house trying to get away from a spider and that’s when I knew I had to gain some control over it.

  5. Well done, Mitch. It’s brave to be able to tackle a wasp if you’ve a phobia of them. (Well, a phobia of bugs of all kinds, too). I used to be terrified of bees, wasps, crane flies, spiders, butterflies and moths. Now I’m only marginally scared of spiders and crane flies, wary of wasps and love butterflies and moths. I can handle the latter, quite easily yet they used to terrify me to the point of hysteria. As for bees… I’m mostly wary of them when they’re in the lawn, otherwise I talk to them. Carefully!

    Good that you’re gradually tackling your phobia, even if you never completely overcome it, it must do a lot for your self-confidence to feel a little less frightened each time?

    1. Thanks Val. You’d think so wouldn’t you, but just a couple of days ago I came upon a big spider and since I didn’t have anything to kill it with I went into a panic & my wife came & killed it with a shoe. I’d have never thought about my shoes because then I’d be walking around with “bug” on them, and that just wouldn’t do. lol

  6. I think you just have to store a bug spray inside your car so as not to act hysterical the next time a bug decides to sojourn in your ride. Face your fear! 🙂

  7. You unleashed the dogs of war upon the beastie and you prevailed. That is worthy of a poem and an epic ballad.

    I am not afraid of bugs, but had it been me I might have made the mistake of smashing the window with that brush. Oy.

    1. Thanks Jack. I unleashed everything I had in my possession on it, that’s for sure. I was really stuck as to what I could do next, but I knew I had to hope the thing didn’t decide to fly back into the car; that would have really been a mess.

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