Hendricks County Flyer, Avon, IN

April 19, 2013

Beware the conspiring bugs

By Rebecca Todd

— It's spring! So far that has meant endless days of rain, and a raging epidemic of spring fever making everyone stare out the windows with their mouths agape, making me think the zombie apocalypse has finally arrived.

On the plus side, it's nice to see the color green outside again. With last year's drought and a winter that drug on long enough for people to begin filing lawsuits against the groundhog, this is the first time my grass has been green in over a year. We didn't mow the lawn last year; we just kind of walked around and crunched the brown grass down.

The bugs weren't much of a problem either. The ones who ventured out just kind of buzzed or crawled around slowly, always landing within arms reach and willing you to swat them and put them out of their heat-induced misery; except for the few ... the proud. They stayed low. They stayed cool and they waited while their brethren were slayed.

Unfortunately, I have discovered what the bugs that weren't out and about last year were doing. They were hiding deep in the ground and they were growing; waiting for their chance to emerge and take over the earth.

I'm speaking specifically of the centipedes. Lately my house has been overrun with large, hideous, multi-legged monstrosities. Frankly, I hesitate to call them bugs. They're too large for that. In fact, I'm a little afraid to let my daughter's Pomeranian in the house. One of the freaky aberrations might carry her off.

With their sudden abundant appearance around the house, I decided to read up on the heinous creatures. With revulsion, I found that yes, the centipede is poisonous, but they rarely bite and the side effects usually only consist of a lot of running, screaming, and a serious case of the heebie jeebies.

But that didn't help much when I came up against him; the granddaddy of all centipedes; the big kehunah of creepiness.

I named him Bob.

Bob and I ran across each other when I was vacuuming my daughter's room. Apparently, Bob was disturbed from his sleep and was none too happy about it. He skittered around a chair and glared at me. At least, I think he was glaring. I'm not so sure where Bob's eyes are.

Slowly, with no sudden moves, I reached for the hose attachment and hooked it up to the vacuum. So armed, I moved toward Bob.

Then Bob did something I hadn't expected. He raised his front half and - I swear this is true - began pawing the air in a threatening gesture. Naturally, I countered with the crane from "Karate Kid."

Bob was not impressed. He skittered to the right in a blink of an eye and I countered to my left mirroring his moves. He raised a leg. I'm pretty sure he was pointing at me.

And then, just like that he was gone.

You should all beware. They are out there and they are plotting our downfall.

Spring rages on. I hear the rain and a slight roll of thunder as I write this, and all I can think of is Bob. I know he's still here; watching me. He knows about the bugs I put out of their misery last year, I'm sure of it. And he's angry. I shiver as I think of him biding his time until ...

Oh, there he is. SPLAT!

Never mind.

- Rebecca Todd is a freelance writer and the author of the book "What's the Point?" available at booklocker.com. Contact her at btodd@tds.net.