Feeling Antsy About Spring

I know that everyone else in the northern hemisphere is happily welcoming spring, but not me. I like winter. I like the cold, and the snow, and the short days…I know, I know…I’m weird. One of the harbingers of spring in our house is the marching of the ants. They come every year. Little tiny black ants, in great number. Given our kitties and Captain Environ-Mental’s concern for the environment, we do not use chemicals to strike back. In fact we don’t use anything inside the house at all; The Captain has some kind of organic crap that he sprays outside all along the perimeter of the house, and it works…eventually.

Until that stuff kicks in, I have to share my living space with hordes of ants. They used to come to the kitchen, despite the fact that we’re careful about crumbs; I mean there are two big bowls of dry cat food out at all times and ants seem to have an affinity for cat chow. But for some reason the ants now turn up in my bathroom, upstairs. They seem to be traveling along the plumbing lines, but I don’t like to think about all that. All I know is that when I go into my bathroom there are little ants in and around the sink. I do what any sane, incredibly cruel person would do and wash them down the drain.

I have what I think is a very fair rule: I don’t go outside into insects’ territory, and I ask that they do not come inside to my space. The problem is that I feel really badly about killing all these guys. I know they’re just ants and everything, but I get caught up in my wild imagination. I mean, what if the ant’s family is sitting at home (presumably somewhere in my plumbing) watching it get later and later and worrying that their loved one isn’t home?

Then sooner or later I start thinking about Revenge of the Ants. One day a giant ant is going to come lumbering up the hallway seeking revenge. “You have killed my people, er, uh, species…and now I’ve come for you!” And then I’m the one washed down some giant drain, or worse. Look, just because as far as we know it’s never happened before doesn’t mean that it might not happen one day.

ant

You might be thinking, what about all those cats? Why aren’t they dealing with the ant situation? The answer is that they are lazy, worthless, or both. They will sit right there on the counter and look at the damn things in the sink; sometimes they give a little half-hearted swat of the paw but mostly they yawn and go back to bed. My bed. While I’m in the bathroom killing ants and wondering about cosmic retribution.

Dreaming of catching bugs, but not actually catching any

Dreaming of catching bugs, but not actually catching any

Yeah, don't feel much like moving right now

Yeah, don’t feel much like moving right now

Of course, if there is an imaginary bug, that’s different. In the Cat Dimension any flicker of a shadow turns into a bug, always at the very top of a wall or on the ceiling, meaning they will literally try to climb the walls to get to a microscopic bug that isn’t even there.

Is that a spot on  the ceiling? Do I need to chase it?

Is that a spot on the ceiling? Do I need to chase it?

The bottom line is that I am dealing with extraordinarily lazy cats, industrious ants, and an overactive imagination. It is a bad combination.

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18 Responses to Feeling Antsy About Spring

  1. Lirebo says:

    We have armies of ants invading our house too! They love to come out (by the hundreds) especially in the bathtub/shower. We are finding that Comet, generously applied, to all surfaces where they travel works well to deter them. And Glass Plus stops em dead in their tracks.

    • Jill Foer Hirsch says:

      Yep, I’ve used Glass Plus in a pinch. Ammonia too. We seem to have them under control now but I noticed some strays this morning. Sigh.

  2. bethteliho says:

    And I thought I was the only one who felt bad about killing bugs in my house. I do it, but I feel like an asshole for it. I will not kill a spider though. I catch them and put them outside.

    KITTTTIIIIIEEEEESS! you know I’m a sucker for a kitty picture. 🙂

    • Jill Foer Hirsch says:

      I try to live with the spiders since they eat the other bugs, but I can’t always deal. Please don’t encourage my Kitty Habit. I take more pics of my cats than anyone under the age of 70 really should…

  3. Pam Waits says:

    In my view, the penalty for trespassing is death. If it’ll make you feel better, post a sign where they can see it. Then it’s incumbent upon them whether they want to risk their lives for a little cat chow. Good luck.

    • Jill Foer Hirsch says:

      Brilliant! House Rules posted in a well-traveled, well-lit spot, so all who enter understand the consequences. And to think, we were going to blow money on an exterminator!

  4. Myrna Rubenstein says:

    Has Mr Environment thought about acquiring an anteater?

  5. I’m no fan of bugs and ants either but after that brutal winter I am so ready for Spring.

    At least you don’t have rats or cockroaches!

  6. sheila blum says:

    I say kill them any way you can and do not feel bad. They are just bugs. Get over it. Love you any way, Sheila

  7. katecrimmins says:

    Well, did you name them first? If you didn’t name them, then it doesn’t count that you kill them. I can send Morgan who still eats any bug she sees and believe me, even with just one eye, she sees them all. She prefers her ants with barbeque sauce. The other cats here think that your cats are very civilized. They wouldn’t consider even thinking about ants. They are saving their energy for more important things like catnip mousies.

    • Jill Foer Hirsch says:

      Please send Morgan to me for a few weeks. Like summer camp, sort of. And yes, my kitties can disembowel a catnip toy in 3 seconds flat, but they have no interest in real prey!

  8. Lisa says:

    I’ve got ants and love spring anyway. Got stink bugs too!

  9. mimijk says:

    We get those little ants too – though I can’t admit to being as merciful..

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