Monday, February 23, 2009

The Pest




Good afternoon, Uncle Marvin Industries!

Um, hi. I'm calling about one of your company's ant farms?

Yes! How can I help you?

Well, my son Jack got one for his birthday...

How exciting! Please tell him "Happy Birthday" from us!

His birthday was actually 9 months ago.

Oh!

See, when his friend Jonah gave him the ant farm for a present, I sort of panicked. To be honest, I wasn't too thrilled by the prospect of actually raising ants in our house. I mean, come on--who likes ants? Not even OTHER ANTS like ants, that's who likes ants. They're nasty, they're greedy and they bite. They're like the Naomi Campbell of the insect world. "Give me my champagne or I'll whack you with my Blackberry, bitch!" Ha, ha! Right?

Uh-huh. Was that a British accent you just used?

Maybe. But you know, I do kind of like the fact that ants have a queen. Sort of makes them more European and regal, don't you think? I mean, rollie-pollies don't have a queen. Probably why they're always getting stepped on. Idiots.

OK...

So anyway, I had the ant farm hidden in Jack's closet for a long time, but, unfortunately, Jack has the instincts of a drug-sniffing German Shepherd and he finally found it wedged under 10 boxes of old clothes and a crate of broken party favors. And now he's been bugging me non-stop to set it up. Oops! Did I just say "bugging"? Ha!

Yeah, good one, ma'am. Haven't heard that before.

Anyway, while I was putting together his ant commune, I saw on the instruction sheet that we're supposed to call this number and order ants?

Yes, you sure are!

But can you tell me why I have to ORDER ants? Can't I just go round up a few from my pantry? I'm sure there's at least 40 of them hanging out in the cracker section right now. Maybe 50 if I left the box of Cheez-Its open last night.

Well, ma'am, the ants from Uncle Marvin Industries are special ants. We've radiated them so they're no longer able to reproduce!

Oh. Wow. Can you imagine having THAT job? "Mom, Dad--you'll never guess what I'm doing with my degree from Harvard Med! I'm sterilizing ants! That's right, I'm zapping insect gonads! Ziizzzz! No babies for you, Mrs. Ant! Ziiizzz! Those boys of yours ain't swimmin' no mo, Mr. Ant!" Oh, man! I feel so sorry for the poor, loser bastard who has to do that job, right?

(long silence)

Let me guess...YOU have to do that job.

Yes, ma'am. Sometimes I do.

OK...well, thanks for your help, but I think I'm just gonna go stick a few rollie-pollies in the old farm and call it a day.

Yes, ma'am, I think that's probably the best thing for all of us. Thanks for calling.





















31 comments:

hokgardner said...

Watch out for roly-polies. We raised a crop of them, and the babies are TINY. A few escaped and we had babies running around the kitchen. Ick.

And my neighbor tried an ant farm, and they all died. Double ick.

Coffee with Cathy said...

Love it! Sterilizing ants is a career choice my college-senior daughter hasn't thought of yet -- maybe I should suggest it to her. At least it's a job!!!

Annje said...

OMG-so funny! The Naomi Campebell of the insect world. love it. I had an ant farm when I was a kid--just picked them up from outside. It was kind of cool to see them carry sugar down their little tunnels. But I poked holes in the lid with an ice-pick and the holes were too big so the ants got out--Mom was not happy.

I'd say go with the roly-polies, but I always see them around poop, so I am starting to suspect that is what they eat... but as long as you are not on pet-feeding duty!

Go with the ants in your pantry--they are probably not fire ants.

jamey r said...

I sent in the stupid form.
The stupid ants couldn't be shipped until spring.
6 months of rabid excitement.
The stupid ants come in an envelope.
The kids dump the stupid ants in the stupid farm, shoving the more adventurous bastards down with the green stick that comes included the starter kit. We spent the next month watching ants (who cannot reproduce die, take the dead ant bits, spread them about the farm and build tunnels around the gravesites. They all worked until they died...The last one was just stuck there. Frozen in little worker ant hell. It was so much more fun than sea monkeys.

*Akilah Sakai* said...

Not long ago, commercials for raising alpacas kept coming on like it was the norm. I've never even heard of alpacas!

But!

They look big enough so you could charge neighborhood kids to ride them and make a fortune! Ants raise zero dollars last I checked. Plus, if they die, you'll acquire meat for summer BBQ's.

(I'll shut up now...)

Domestic Goddess (In Training) said...

I don't know which job is worse... the ant sterlizer or being Naomi Campbell's champaign fetcher?

Cheryl Prater said...

Whoever let their kid give your kid that ant farm is not your friend, Wendi. This is how I knew my brother hated me: he gave my twins Play Do when they turned three. It's now been ten years since we've spoken.

And am I the only one that finds it ironic that "Uncle" Marvin deals in ants....get it? Aunts? Oh never mind.

Deb said...

Crap. We have one of those ant farms buried away. Thanks for the inspiration...I'm going to go throw it out now.

Radiated ants!! How funny. Maybe we could radiate our husbands to sterilize them?

bernthis said...

get him a hooker. I don' t care how old he is. Anything is better than ants.

K said...

Seriously - radiated ants so they don't reproduce. My goodness - that just made my job look so much cooler.

Sharon said...

Oh ya...the ants. They were our dining room centre piece for about two months this summer. Quite the little cannabalistc soap opera, those ants. I don't know about any blackberries, but those little sadists have no qualms about biting the head off one of their friends. I guess they are a bit like Naomi.

peajaye said...

note to self: come up with new way of selling vermin to little boys, but with non-threatening, catchy title: Termite Townhouse? Lice Lounge? Cockroach Condo?

coffeypot said...

I'd order Army Ants. It would be neat watching them march around in formation (a long, narrow formations because of all the glass walls ya know) and doing their exercises and stuff. OOOHHH RAH!

And then I would order some Red Ants so the Army Ants could fight the little commie bastards, and, and... Oh, sorry! The point is you didn’t want ANY ants. I’ll leave now.

Marinka said...

Unless there's one Octomomant.

the mama bird diaries said...

Ants?! Ugh.

How about a snake farm?

Or a roach farm?

Or a mouse farm?

When iss your son's birthday? I'll get him one of those.

Cassie said...

Heeey! How about I send you some of my ants?! That would be awesome! Your kid could have a multi-state, multi-cultural, even INTERnational ant farm! HA! He'd be the coolest kid around.

MadMad said...

Hhahahaha! My son got a FROG farm (though I suppose it's called a "habitat" when it's about frogs) and I tried that same hiding trick you did, with the same result. Somehow, though, I managed to trick him into giving it to his TEACHER so his whole class could share.

Neither of them counts me among their favorites right now, I have to admit...

Cat said...

Ah, roly polies - the hedgehog of the bug kingdom.

Belle said...

I've been through that whole 'nurturing' phase. It sucks. They start off with the matchsticks in the avo pip and before you know it, you have a friggin rabbit farm in your back yard. The ant farm is somewhere in between. My advice is buy him a Wii.

Kate Coveny Hood said...

One of the things that I like about living "inside" of my house is that the bugs are "outside". At least in theory...

Heather said...

We call roly-polies - wood lice. Roly-polies is such a nicer name. Who wants to bring radiated ants into the house!

rightonmom said...

Just the way 'rollie pollie' rolls off the tongue is so much better than 'ant', let alone 'antz'.

Terminix will cure all your ant ills.

Melissa said...

At least it wasn't the frog kit. We got one of those. Had to sneak it out of the house before he insisted on ordering the freakin' frogs.

pat said...

wow, I remember those from many years ago...also the little mini shrimp farms ...sea monsters or something. I think they were actually a kind of sea lice.

Kylie w Warszawie said...

That's fabulous! I wish I had the ability to have those kinds of conversations. Mine are usually "Me want salad of the greek. Please. To be bringing me water. With gas."

Anna Lefler said...

So...if you hit *anything* with radiation it'll keep it from multiplying?

And does Uncle What's-His-Head the ant broker sell *those* machines, too, by any chance?

Why am I asking?

No reason.

:^) Anna

Wendy said...

We just got a butterfly hatchery at our house (in winter) and every day my son asks me when we can get butterflies.

What I really want to tell him is so far with the exception of him, his dad and his brother I have killed every living thing that has ever come into our house. And I'm not sure about his dad... I think that one is just a matter of time.

So, I feel your pain. Sort of.

By the way, I'm featuring you on a new blog I started: The Wendy Channel (even though you're actually a Wendi, but we can forgive you that.) ;-)

Steph said...

I'm pretty sure irradiated ants cause cancer.

Momma B said...

I think I giggled through this more than a young girl flicking boogers at the head of the mean old lady in front of her!

Queen Goob said...

We have fire ants down here and I'm a thinkin' those wouldn't work so I won't send you any. However, I wouldn't mind getting rid of a few ginormous palmetto bugs if you'd like.....ask your son, I bet he's be cool with it, too!

Sandra said...

So funny!!!!