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John Winters Columnist

Published Sunday, August 19, 2012

Ants, ants, everywhere

Apparently, we have ants.

Ow! Dang it.

Sorry. That would be my precious Little Black Dress providing an ever so gentle thump up against my head. Apparently, the word “apparently” is not sufficient and leaves some doubt. In the eyes of The Dress, there is none. We have, in her words, colonies, droves, hordes and other related astronomical numbers of the dreaded insect.

I have tried to point out our subdivision is called “The Woods,” hence an ant or two is expected. For the most part, they are those very small brown ants; the Latin term escapes me at the moment.

They thoroughly enjoy our large trash container, which I would like to point out, is located outside. Every morning several streams of said ants cruise Ant Highway to Trash Container Mecca. Foraging for dainty morsels, which just goes to show that one man’s trash truly is another man’s treasure. Or in this case, one man’s trash is another ant’s treasure.

They are annoying at times. Primarily when one tries to put another trash bag in the container and the little insects seem to jump up and do the whole swarm thing on you. And yes, there are times the green trash container appears to be brown, and alive with movement. There is an easy fix - the mighty Windex not only cleans windows, it’s napalm to these ants. One shot, thousand kills.

For some reason, these little brown critters decided our scrumptious alter offering was insufficient. They have the audacity to enter the sacred realm; to wit, the LBD’s bathroom and the SONs’ bedrooms. The latter makes sense. My philosophy is if you leave various snack bar wrappers and crumbs under one’s bed, ants will find them, tell their buddies and soon there is a new trail to Mecca.

Entering the LBD’s inner sanctum, however, is another issue. The “Do Something” remark was not in the tone one would associate with a damsel in distress; nay, but rather a tone of “Or Else.”

Because, you know, it’s all my fault. And my suggestion to just squash them or spray them or whatever is falling on rather death ears.

Fast forward to a couple of days ago. I’m at the office being all journalisty and stuff when I get a text from The Dress. You know how sometimes you can “feel” the tone of an e-mail or text message? Yeah.

Apparently, oh scratch that, obviously the ants are back. This time in our sacred bedroom. And the little brown ants brought their big brothers, rather large black ants. And based on the texts, they number in the gabillions and are about to carry off The Dress to some underground lair.

And she is facing a dilemma. Said black ants are mating, her words, not mine. Having a heart of mercy, she obviously hesitated for a nanosecond or two. I know this because I was soon informed the Windex/napalm was not working and there was some comment about lighter fluid. This followed by a “I’m going in, pray for me” text.

I get home and walk upstairs. The Dress is sweeping up the spoils of victory. Every single bottle of whatever we have under the kitchen sink is spread out, from the inadequate Windex to carpet cleaner. There is also a baseball bat. “A girl has to do what a girl has to do,” is all she says. She was comforted somewhat when she learned the “professional” term for what the ants were doing is called “spawning” rather than mating.

The ants are not welcome. But a certain spider is. Said spider is quite pretty, with a long yellow line down its back. Eldest SON told me it was a common, yet effective, garden spider. I was going to move it to a garden when I noticed a rather large egg sack.

That sack becomes pretty key because The Dress is adamant we are not moving it until we have that whole Charlotte’s Web birth thing. Did I mention this egg sack/spider and its web are attached to our front door? And that you have to sort of duck when you go out the front door so you don’t hurt the web?

I am slightly confused. Invade the domicile and spawn? Prepare to die. Cover the entrance to the domicile, provided you have little ones on the way, and we are supposed to get into various contortions to ensure our house looks like Halloween.

I give up. A man has to do what a man has to do. I’ve called in the exterminators.


John A. Winters is a staff writer for The Newnan-Times Herald. His personal blog (Just Flip The Dog) is at http://justflipthedog.com

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