Wednesday, February 17, 2010
[The title is a reference to an Australian movie from the 1980's. That movie has absolutely nothing to do with ants. The cabbage does, though.]
The piece I published yesterday, The Ant & The Dishwasher, certainly spurred some of you to lengthy and interesting comments. Some agreed with my general attitude toward insects, while some wholeheartedly applauded MY WIFE for wishing to off the little buggers. I was amused by all, of whatever opinion, but one in particular brought to mind another ant story.
First, the comment, by Eva Gallant, of Wrestling With Retirement:
I had a bout with ants, years ago. We had just moved into a house and my in-laws had come to dinner for my son's first birthday. After dinner, I opened the kitchen cupboard to get the birthday cake, and my baby-blue frosting was black! The cake was covered with little black ants - hundreds of them! I screamed and screamed, and hubby grabbed the cake and threw it out onto the front lawn. No birthday cake that day! Luckily, at 1 year old, my son had no clue what had happened. We ended up getting the exterminators in and they found a huge ant nest in behind the dishwasher. No, no qualms about killing those suckers :-)
Aside from alarming me concerning the possibilities now inherent with my voluntarily having left an ant in my own dishwasher, Eva brought the following memory to mind.
In a previous home, we had ants. No big deal, though. We would see one every so often, but never more than one at a time. Whenever I saw one, I usually just let him be on his antly way. He wasn't bothering me, so why should I bother him?
Well, one evening I had made a New England Boiled Dinner. It was mighty good, too, and mostly finished in a rather expeditious fashion by the two of us. The next day, I had the little bit of leftover ham for a mid-morning snack. All that remained was a decent-sized hunk of boiled cabbage. We then went out on some errand or another.
When we returned home, I saw that I had left the bowl of cabbage on the counter, uncovered, rather than returning it to the refrigerator. And, when I walked over to the bowl, I saw that it was FULL of ants; thousands of them. I guess they really, really, really like cabbage.
Anyway, it made disposal of them quite easy. I took the entire bowl outside and left it there. And I'm delighted to report we had no ants after that - not even a lone straggler - for months. I can only come to one of two possible conclusions:
1 - Cabbage kills ants.
2 - My New England Boiled Dinner kills ants.
In any case, if I ever again find us infested with a large and troublesome colony, I will try to remember this lesson. I will lay out a large bowl of cabbage and see what happens. Rest assured that, when I do, you'll hear about it, in detail.
Soon, with more boiled cabbage (which drawing of, by the way, I got from Uncle Stinky. No, I didn't make that up.)
P.S. It just occurred to me that perhaps the ants all got vicious gas from the cabbage and then exploded. I still don't like killing insects, but if that's what happened, I wish I had seen it.
[Addendum having nothing whatsoever to do with ants: My Darker Gray Friend, Michelle, is having a contest and giveaway over at her place. It's a guessing game. Why not head on over and take a shot? Go HERE to play.]