There is not a single person who will deny that 2020 deserves a hard restart. For all intents and purposes, this year has been a bust. There, of course, has been the most obvious challenge — COVID 19, and all the related economic, social, and medical concerns around it. Then along came the so-called Murder Hornets (which have seemingly become lost in the news cycle, a good thing because I really didn’t need to see another picture of this particular critter). Basketball icon Kobe Bryant (who also seemed to be a pretty good guy, not altogether common among professional athletes) was killed in a helicopter crash. We are once again hearing nearly unbelievable news about another African American man dying from undue police force, and subsequent protests and riots. There have been what seems like an abnormally high number of weather and environmental catastrophes — brush fires, flooding, tornadoes, etc., and we haven’t even hit hurricane season yet. And, of course, Harry and Meghan left the royal circles. (Can it get any worse than that?)
So when I read that the 17-year cicada cycle will take place this year, it really came as no surprise. I grew up in Nebraska, where there are plenty of ugly bugs to brag about, but is spared the cicadas that come out of the ground (or out of wherever they have been hanging out for the past 17 years) to do whatever it is they do every 17 years. This year I think they just want to see if all of the rumors of global catastrophes are true.
I, frankly, had never heard of the 17-year cicadas until the late ’80s. The first time I met Bill’s parents at their home in Chicago, as I got out of the car, I couldn’t help but notice that there were literally hundreds of really ugly-looking insects crawling out of their grass.
“You didn’t tell me your parents lived in the Twilight Zone,” I said to Bill with terror in my voice. “I thought they were WASPs, not victims of the Plague of Locusts.”
“Watch where you walk,” Bill told me. “Every 17 years, it sounds like Chicagoans are walking on seashells.”
Well, yuck. Just yuck.
With thanks to God that Colorado is also spared the 17-year-locust cycle, I have turned instead to our own plague of Miller Moths. Not surprisingly, entomologists are predicting that 2020 will be a record-breaking year when it comes to numbers of Miller Moths. No reasons were cited in the article I read. Quite possibly the only reason is that its 2020.
I simply can’t describe how many Miller Moths we have at our house. So many, in fact, that the young man from our pest control company who sprayed last week actually commented on the numbers. And he looks at bugs every day. Thankfully, I have found very few in our house. They could be hiding from me so that they can fly into my face each night when I’m sleeping and unaware.
Before beginning to write this post, I looked up to see if Miller Moths posed any danger. Most websites insisted that Miller Moths are annoying but pose no threat. One website, however, says Moths are considered dangerous to humans and also for pets because they contaminate food and certain types of pet food (such as dry pellets) with their feces…..Contact with food and textiles that has been infested by the moths can lead to allergic reactions and mucosal irritations for humans and pets. Consuming of moth infested food can also lead to intestinal diseases.
It’s a German website, however, so I’m not taking it seriously. Germans are just a bunch of worry warts. Anyway, apparently the moths will be gone sometime in the next couple of weeks, hopefully giving us time to prepare for the next crisis. Maybe it will include aliens.