Terror in the Laundry Room (Part 2)

August 8, 2008

It’s Thursday afternoon, and I can’t put it off any longer. I’ve got to go downstairs to the laundry room and try to locate the poodle/wasp.

Even though it’s daylight, the partly closed window blinds will keep the room somewhat darkened, so I carry a replacement light bulb with me in one hand, a fly swatter in the other. I slowly open the laundry room door.

I hear no buzzing.

I quickly unscrew the light bulb I had whacked out of commission the night before, and I replace it with the new bulb. With the laundry room bathed in light, I immediately see the poodle/wasp on the floor. Just as I had hoped, I had hit my target (along with the light bulb) with one mighty blow last night.

Still, there is the possibility that the poodle/wasp is playing possum, or that he’s morphed into a zombie, so I approach him with extreme caution. I bend down and cover him with the head of the fly swatter, and I apply pressure.


Holy crap! He’s still alive, and he’s buzzing like a runaway chainsaw! He’s vibrating so hard, he’s making it hard for me to keep him pinned to the floor.

Just as he’s about to vibrate his way out of my clutches, I step onto the fly swatter head. The resulting CRUNCH sounds like a large person sat on a dozen bags of corn flakes.

My two-day nightmare is over. Poodle/wasp has been vanquished.

Game, set, match.

I leave my victim on the floor, so that later in the day I can show my wife who wears the poodle/wasp-stomping pants in the family.

She’s not terribly impressed. In his squished and vanquished state, he seems much smaller than the monster that flew at my head the night before. Today he looks nothing like the spawn of a poodle and a wasp. More like … um, a very big wasp.

Just the same, I’m hoping he doesn’t have friends or immediate family in the area.


Super fly

August 7, 2008
© Chuck Ingwersen, 2008 


© Chuck Ingwersen, 2008

Terror in the Laundry Room (Part 1)

August 7, 2008

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 …