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The stinkbug’s revenge. May 10, 2011

Posted by ourfriendben in critters, homesteading, Uncategorized, wit and wisdom.
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Silence Dogood here. Spring brings us daffodils, sweet breezes, and… stinkbugs. Once the weather finally warmed up here at Hawk’s Haven, the cottage home our friend Ben and I share in the precise middle of nowhere, PA, the stinkbugs literally started coming out of the woodwork as they emerged from their winter hibernation in the walls of our house.

I’ll admit it, I hate bugs. I try to bear with them; really I do. I leave spiders alone in our house so they can catch and dispatch other alien invaders, unless they’re in the tub. I try to turn a benign eye on bees, beneficial insects like pollinator flies and ladybugs, dragonflies, and the like outdoors, and enjoy watching butterflies as much as the next gardener. I realize that ants, dung beetles, and the like are serving useful purposes. I just don’t want them getting in the house, or worse yet, getting on me. Feeling anything crawling on me is cause for an immediate screaming, leaping jig that would make the world’s best break-dancer look like a lazy slob. I’m convinced that whatever it is must be a tick, my arch-nemesis, and it’s coming to get me.

So imagine this scene:

It’s 5 a.m., and I’m trying to pretend that this horrid weather has not given me yet another sinus headache, that I didn’t just have a very bizarre dream involving boats of a design of my own invention, and that it isn’t starting to get light. I just…want… to… sleep. I’ve almost managed it when I realize that my left hand, extended in the direction of our friend Ben, has begun to itch. I put my right hand down on it and realize that something under my hand is moving.

Silence: AAAAAAHHHHHH!!!!!! Ben! BEN!!!!!

Our friend Ben: Mmmpf.

Silence: There’s a stinkbug on my hand!!! BEN!!!! Wake up! Get it off me! [Shaking hand furiously.]

OFB: Mmmpf…

Silence: BENNNNNNNNNNN!!!!! Get it off! GET IT OFF!!!!! Oh.

OFB: Uh, say what, Silence? What’s going on here?

Silence: There was a stinkbug on my hand. But I think it just flew away. [Turns on light, searches bed for stinkbug. Turns off light. Starts to go back to sleep. Stinkbug flies back and lands on finger.]

Silence: AAAAAGGHHHH!!!! BEN! Get up! Get it off! Get it out of here! BEN!!!!!!!!!!!

OFB: Ummmm, OK, OK. [Turns on light, lurches out of bed.] Geez, Silence, you sure are making a racket.

Silence: GRRRRRRRRRRRR. [Stares at OFB, who, far from removing the stinkbug, appears to be rummaging in a dresser drawer.] Ben, what are you doing?! Get this bug off me and get it out of here right now!!!! [Furiously shaking hand; stinkbug lands on sheet.] Why are you looking for your tee-shirt?!

OFB: Well, you told me one of our readers said stinkbugs bite. I thought I’d pick it up in the tee-shirt before taking it outside and…


[curtain; possibly curtains for OFB]

We know we’re not alone in our plight, because readers have been coming onto our blog, Poor Richard’s Almanac, in droves in recent weeks looking for our earlier stinkbug-related posts, “When will stink bugs go away?,” “Big news for stinkbug haters,” and, of course, the classic, %$#@!!*%$ stink bugs. [WordPress seems to insist that this title is a link, but trust me, it isn’t. Sorry about that!] Stinkbug season has arrived. For more about these horrid alien invaders, and for some ingenious tips from readers on how to keep them away, I suggest that you search out these posts by typing their titles in the search bar at upper right. Don’t forget to read the comments!

Apparently, preventive action with mint alcohol and direct assault with Windex both work wonders. We’re still in the catch-and-release phase here, but if we start seeing clusters outside on the front door as we did last year, we’ll definitely wipe down the door with mint alcohol (look for it in the rubbing-alcohol section of your local pharmacy) and hope it doesn’t dye our white door green!

              ‘Til next time,




1. alan - May 10, 2011

I think the title screams to be a book! I’m reading “The Salmon Of Doubt” by D. Adams. (Loving it!!! Good to have short burst of ROTFLMAO.)

There are a few bugs and a few “weeds” that push me pretty close to the “dark side”. The nuclear option…

I’ll have to check if Penelope (our hedgehog) likes stink bugs. She is a voracious insectavore. Maybe a new pet (grumpy, prickly, husband like…) would help.

Ha!!! Love “The Salmon of Doubt,” Alan! Talk about a classic title. And you’re right, “The Stinkbug’s Revenge” would be a good one, too. I know what you mean about weeds and the Dark Side; we’ll be posting about poison ivy soon and it’s a horror here, though we think we have good reasons for hand-pulling. Got some lovely free compost last year with thistles as an extra bonus, and have been cursing and pulling them too. Go Penelope!!! Each time I toss a stinkbug out the door, I ask the grackles why they’re not eating them instead of our outdoor cat’s food, but so far, no takers. As for a grumpy, prickly, husbandlike pet, hey, I already have OFB…

2. alan - May 10, 2011

There was a thought at the begining of my last comment that got eaten by the bugs. Something on the line of %$#@!!*%$ Stink Bugs reminded me of Douglas Adams writing (paired with your and OFB’s wit…) I’ll refrain from telling you to eat them… BUT, I think the mint-alcohol (read TALL Mint Julep with LOTS of really good Bourbon…) might do the trick. Don’t know if it kills them, but after a few glasses you don’t care.

Ha!!! again. I once read that that was why people became addicted to tranquilizers: The problems were still there, but you no longer cared. Bourbon strikes me as a better option, though: at least its tastes good! Hmmm… wonder if stinkbugs would go for a shallow dish of beer, like slugs, then get drunk, fall in and drown…

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