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Ladybug, ladybug, fly away home - The Fucking Bluebird of Goddamn Happiness [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Zoethe

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Ladybug, ladybug, fly away home [Oct. 14th, 2003|11:22 am]
Zoethe
[Current Mood |workingworking]

The Midwest is seeing an infestation of Asian lady beetles, apparently a very close cousin to the common ladybug. shawnj has complained about the beetles haunting his life and we certainly have had them banging about the light fixtures. I figured them for ladybugs and didn't pay much attention.

And then this weird thing happened. A whole urban legend grew up around these innocuous little insects almost overnight. The neighbor told Ferrett that they bite. A friend said that they crawl into the pipes and clog them, and that she'd heard that they eat wood like termites. I went from tolerating their existence to an aggressive frontal attack. For about a day. Then I did a little searching and learned that, while creepy to some people, they really are quite harmless. They're even likely to be beneficial next spring for gardeners.

Fascinating that the presence of an unusual volume of such a small and benign creature sends people into monster movie mode.
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: scouseboy
2003-10-14 08:32 am (UTC)
Your post reminded me of one of my favourite things- Dougal's description of the Beast of Craggy Island...

"They say it's as big as four cats, and it's got a retractable leg so that it can leap up at you better. And do you know what Ted, it lights up at night, and em, it's got four ears, two of them are for listening and the other two are kind of back-up ears... and it's claws are as big as cups and for some reason it's got a tremendous fear of stamps and Mrs. Doyle was telling me it has a magnets on it's tail so if you are made out of metal it can attach onto you and instead of a mouth it has four arses."

All hail Father Ted.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2003-10-14 08:45 am (UTC)
I love Father Ted! Dougal's hysterical. I haven't seen that episode - I've watched parts of the collection but not the whole thing yet.

And, yeah, that's about how it happens. People are strange wee creatures....
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2003-10-14 10:17 am (UTC)
As other people are saying, one or two are pretty; hundreds are irritating.
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[User Picture]From: theferrett
2003-10-15 09:59 am (UTC)
So you gonna tell him your frog story, sweetie? Or shall I?

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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2003-10-15 10:07 am (UTC)
I was planning to write up an LJ entry on it soon - why waste it in a mere comment?
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[User Picture]From: finding_helena
2003-10-14 09:31 am (UTC)
They may be harmless, but when you have 100,000 infesting your room, no matter how harmless they are, they're bound to get annoying. I have enough on my windowsill to feed a third-world country for a week. *swat*
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[User Picture]From: shawnj
2003-10-14 10:09 am (UTC)
*EXACTLY*

When my vacuum struggles to clean up the pile of corpses in the corner, you know something's up.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2003-10-14 10:18 am (UTC)
My daughter hated them for the same reason last year at school - they couldn't keep them out of the food in the cafeteria and she basically gave up eating for about a month.
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[User Picture]From: moominmuppet
2003-10-14 10:01 am (UTC)
I don't know if it was Asian Lady Beetles or regular ladybugs, but we always got huge infestations in all the south-facing dorm rooms at my college. It was just part of fall each year. Leaves changing colors, school back in session, not being able to see through your windows because of the solid wall of ladybugs attached to it.
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[User Picture]From: moominmuppet
2003-10-14 10:05 am (UTC)
And infinitely, infinitely preferable to the cicadas the year they descended on campus. I never want to see that large a volume of squashed bug guts in one location again.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2003-10-14 10:18 am (UTC)
Ew.

Just...ew.
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[User Picture]From: moominmuppet
2003-10-14 10:20 am (UTC)
Oh, I could go on in much more graphic and disgusting detail, but I'll spare you. It was a phenomenal biological event to witness, but it was also, um, kinda gross.
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[User Picture]From: shawnj
2003-10-14 10:10 am (UTC)
Were they yellow? If they were yellow or orange, chances are they were Asian lady beetles
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[User Picture]From: moominmuppet
2003-10-14 10:18 am (UTC)
Red or orange, but I don't remember which...
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2003-10-14 06:45 pm (UTC)

Re: The voice of science looms large again

Thank you, Dr. Science.

;-)

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[User Picture]From: kimbyrle
2003-10-14 04:32 pm (UTC)
Whatever you do, don't eat one. I was eating dinner with my parents out on the back deck, and one fell into my baked beans, and I didn't see it and crunched it... ew ew ew ew ew ew, it was so nasty and bitter and crunchy and disgusting and ew ew ew ew ew ew ew ew ew ew!!!!!
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2003-10-14 06:48 pm (UTC)
I did that with a stinkbug once - biking and it flew into my mouth. Bit down on it before I realized. Bleck bleck bleck
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[User Picture]From: theferrett
2003-10-14 07:05 pm (UTC)
Can we stop with the bug-gnawing stories? PLEASE?
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[User Picture]From: blazepoet
2003-10-14 07:49 pm (UTC)

My life with swarns

We have moths. Millions of miller moths that love to infest our house. You would hit the walls and thousands of them would come pouring out of cracks.

One day I was driving my car that had been sitting outside unused for a couple weeks during peak infestation time. I pulled up to the stoplight and moths literally came pouring out from my car. From the vents in the front of the car, under the hood and wheel wells.

So I’m sitting at the stoplight with my own personal moth swarm and all the other people are looking at me with large disturbed eyes. Fortunately the light turned green and I proceed off into the sunset, with a large trail of bugs behind me.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2003-10-15 01:47 am (UTC)

Re: My life with swarms

Eep. It's a great visual, but only from a distance, I'm sure! Alfred Hitchcock would have loved it.
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[User Picture]From: blazepoet
2003-10-15 01:13 pm (UTC)

Re: My life with swarms

Having them come out of the vents inside the car was definitly Hitchcockian. I'm glad I'm not very skitterish around bugs or I would have ended up in the ditch or driving more erratically than a drunken senator.

Having swarms of moths crawling all over your skin is a unique expereince and also a great way to mentally scar your siblings.
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[User Picture]From: tygher
2003-10-14 09:40 pm (UTC)
Despite the mild annoyance factor .. this sounds pretty!

I've always loved laydbirds .. send some this way, willya? :)
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2003-10-15 01:49 am (UTC)
Talk to Shawn - it sounds like he has plenty to spare!
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