Monday, January 14, 2008
Fame is Fleeting and some bug stuff
Well I am writing this from the scene of one of my latest moments of glory - the Comfort Suites in Colonial Heights, Va. For those of you that do not take notes of all my achievements - that was the hotel where I was (drum roll please - ) Guest of the Day about a month ago. I drove up (and parked in the Platinum Elite member space - I might add) gathered my goodies and headed in. I thought of pulling a hat down over my head and putting my collar up to hide from the photographers and autograph fans, but I had no hat and the crowds just were not really a problem. I ambled to the front desk and it was the same girl! Surely here the recognition would reign! But as I approached her I glanced to the reader board - the same reader board that not so long ago was praising me as Guest of the Day! I staggered a bit under the realization that there was another name on MY sign! Then it hit me - Guest of the Day! I had lived my glorious 24 hours and now it was time to move on. OH WOE IS ME. I curse you David Wilkins (today's guest of the day) and all you other usurpers. For it is known far and wide that I was THE Guest of the Day! Now for the bug stuff. Late last week at work a discussion of roaches and other large bugs broke out. (I do not remember how, but it seemed relevant at the time) I have noticed over the years if a person says they saw a roach THIS BIG (with fingers about two inches apart), someone else has seen on THIS BIG plus an inch or two. I guess it is like fish. The one you can't prove is always the largest. This reminded me of two bug/roach stories from my past. The first involves my father's store/office in Raeford, NC from my childhoodand teenage days. The store/office had a back room area where appliances had once proudly stood awaiting a customer. I guess you can figure he was in the appliance business once. He had gotten out of that business and had put up a wall to make the insurance part of the office smaller and to hide decades of junk that was in the back and he did not want to clean up. There were bugs back there that had mailing addresses. I am talking De Niro from Taxi Driver bugs (You talkin' to me, YOU TALKIN' TO ME!!) with their slicked back feelers and baggy clothes. When I was young I remember thinking I would go into the back and kill some bugs with bug spray. I took in my can of Raid and went hunting. I saw one and started spraying. He just looked at me a laughed. "That all you got, punk?" he laughed. "I eat Raid for breakfast". Soon there were Raid junkie roaches coming out of the woodwork (literally) saying "Spray me, come on man, just a taste". I just dropped the can and got out of there. I would kill a number of them over the years, but I never ever tried Raid again. The other story is from Ft Lauderdale, Fla. We were living in a complex with a large parking garage with tennis courts on top. We were walking our dog, who was still young - not quite a puppy but not fully grown by any means. We were walking by the parking garage and I saw her (the dog) start and pull towards a spot in the grass. We headed over that way and when we got close, what I thought was a bird flew out and away. Our dog went wild and barked at it. I saw her looking around and pulling on her leash so I thought it would be fun for her to go and "play" with the birds. She ran off and almost immediately started yelping. She ran back to us screaming and yelping with one of these "birds" on her nose. As she got closer I saw it was a HUGE bug with pinchers/claws that had attached itself to her nose. I grabbed her and tried to brush the bug away. Needless to say it was amused at my efforts. She was dog-screaming, my wife was human-screaming and I was ready to run. I eventually got the bug off and re-leashed the dog and was heading for home. As we looked in the parking garage I saw the floor was very wet, as it had rained earlier and the drains never did work that well. I also saw the water was moving! As we got closer, we saw that the floor was covered with bugs. LARGE bugs, some bigger than the one that ate my dogs nose! There had to be thousands. I was going to get some bug spray, but my experience in the office in Raeford had cured me of that. I headed home to give my dog a sedative. I know being human (I have discovered that humans make up the largest majority of my audience) that each of you has a bug story that features bigger and weirder bugs - right?