The following is a true story. Pretty much.
My eyes are darting around the laundry room as I pull the warm towels out of the dryer. I’m desperately trying to find the source of a loud buzzing noise. An angry buzzing noise. I’m not a big fan of angry buzzing noises.
What is it? Where is it coming from?
It isn’t the dryer signal; that doesn’t go off when the dryer door is open.
It isn’t the dying fizzle of the light bulb above the dryer. No flickering light there.
It isn’t — WAIT! There, on the window to the left of the dryer. What the …
Is that a bird? An enormous dragonfly? A wasp. It must be a wasp. But, geez, It’s nearly the size of a shoe. It’s as if a poodle mated with a wasp, and their hellish spawn is in a very bad mood, in my laundry room.
The poodle/wasp is fluttering between the window pane and the horizontal blinds. And — oh, great — the blinds are open just enough for the poodle/wasp to …
… FLY RIGHT AT MY HEAD — at the very moment I realize the poodle/wasp has the opportunity to FLY RIGHT AT MY HEAD!
The poodle/wasp swoops past my ducked head and then does a loop straight up to the lighbulb above the dryer, taking his perch there. I bolt out of the laundry room, slamming the door behind me. But I immediately realize that in this part of the basement, the door does not reach the ceiling. There’s a gap big enough for a squadron of poodle/wasps to fly through. This means I’ve got to act fast.
I rush upstairs and grab a fly swatter (wishing we owned a poodle/wasp swatter), and in seconds I’m back at the laundry room door. I open the door — slowly, cautiously — and look up at the light bulb. Yep. He’s still there, perched silently on the bulb that illuminates the room.
So. Dang. Big.
I don’t like trying to swat something that enormous. Suddenly I flash back to the previous night. My wife and I watched “The Mist,” a horror movie that features gigantic bugs and slimy creatures that come out of a mysterious mist in full attack mode. There’s no mist in my laundry room, but I feel like I’m in my own version of the movie.
Focus! Forget the movie. I’ve got to act now before the poodle/wasp zooms at me, attaches himself to my face and carries me off to his nest.
I plant my feet, rear back and SWAT the poodle/wasp on the light bulb and — LIGHT’S OUT!
Yes, I’ve just killed the light bulb. Now I’m in darkness, not knowing whether I’ve hit my intended target or just made him a lot angrier. I hear no buzzing, which is a good sign. But maybe I hear no buzzing because all I can hear is my heart beating double time.
Thanks to a streetlight outside the laundry room window, I can see a flashlight near the dryer. Without taking a step, I stretch for it and grab it. I flick on the flashlight and begin searching the floor for what I hope is a poodle/wasp carcass. I need closure.
I’m pointing the flashlight all around the laundry room. Wow, there sure are a lot of stains on the floor that I hadn’t notice before. Are they poodle/wasp guts? Can’t really tell …
Wait. If he’s still alive, isn’t the light going to attract him to me? I back out of the laundry room and shut the door. Yes, there’s that gap above the door, but there’s a second door that closes off both the laundry room and our storage space room. Good enough for now. Come tomorrow’s light, I’ll conduct a thorough search.
Tonight, I’ll resist the urge to spend the night in a hotel. But I can imagine going to sleep and dreaming about the poodle/wasp gnawing off my face, then waking up to find the poodle/wasp GNAWING OFF MY FACE!
To be continued …