Monday, November 10, 2008

Cockroach Chronicles: Part One

The paralyzing fear began in the summer of '87. There was an incident in my bedroom. This is when I found out....they can fly.

It was a hot, humid Oregon summer. There was a somewhat smallish roach on my bedroom ceiling. I had a friend over to spend the night. We stared at it, planning its execution. As if it could read my mind, it decided to show me who owned the ceiling. It did not jump. It did not fall. It flew right at me. Screaming, I ran the direction I was facing...which required an Olympic hurdle over my foot board. I didn't quit make it. I landed on the floor, and the roach thought it best to land in my dark hair...eerily a perfect camo for the nasty little beast. Had I been blond, they could have gotten it out sooner. They could have seen it right away and flicked it off. But I am not blond (even though that was the summer of Sun-In), and that night commenced my fear, loathing and paranoia of these nasty, repulsive little monsters.

I generally only had to worry about them in the summer and eventually my parents pulled the juniper bushes from the front of the house, which were rumored to be attractive to roaches. These particular roaches were small, didn't invade cupboards, and just basically liked to fly around terrifying everyone. They liked to live outside. But things were about to take a turn for the worse.

I got married (no, that wasn't the turn for the worse), and we moved into a very cute, "retro" if you will, apartment complex. They were vintage 1940, in an older part of town. Moving day went fine...but then the sun went down. We turned on a movie, watched for a bit, and then I decided to go into the kitchen to get some ice cream. I flipped on the light and there were about 30 roaches, frozen-mid-scurry, all over the floor. In point two seconds, they were just gone. I screamed.
The next morning, as new brides do, I got up at the butt-crack of dawn to make Hubby his lunch to take to work. As we weren't yet unpacked, I had to go into the living room and dig through a big box to find the sandwich baggies. I was pre-Lasik, so I was blind as a bat. As I was diggin through the boxes, I felt something cold on the underside of my poor, poor bare foot. I said to myself, "Gross! I hate when I drop lunch meat and step on it. Ewwww!" So I started kicking my foot to get the meat off, because who wants to touch cold lunch meat on a foot? What fell off my naked foot wasn't turkey-colored. It was black. And the size of a date. But dates aren't allowed in my house (nas-tay). I didn't know what that black thing was because I didn't have my glasses on. I bent down within 3 inches of "It" so my nearly blind eyes could tell me what it was. As it started to come into focus, I saw that it was a big, black, fat roach! Not the little flying kind, the robust-crawled-up-from-the-sewer type. Big, slow and shiny. (How do I type a retching noise?)

I screamed bloody murder, and started running in a manner quite reminiscent of Ferris Bueller's sister when she saw the principal at her doorstep. I ran straight into the bathroom, screaming and crying all the way, turned the water on to "scalding" and scalded my foot. After sufficiently sterilizing my flesh, I ran (screaming and crying still) into my room, jumped on my bed and curled up into a ball, and told my husband to call the landlord, we were moving!

Stay tuned for Part 2 tomorrow.


Deb said...

FYI: Retching noise is typed "Bleehhhhk."

I saw one in Disneyland walking around the sidewalk in EPCOT while on the vacation from Hell with my son, wasbund, father-outlaw and the father-outlaw's dipsh*t girlfriend. The father-outlaw told me it was a palmetto bug. Oh, OK. Must come from palms or something. My son went to investigate it like little boys will do. Ten minutes later the father-outlaw whispered to me, 'That bug is otherwise known as a cockroach." Idiot. Tell me AFTER my son's been playing with the freakin' thing.

Anonymous said...

I LOVE that picture! The perfect illustration to your post. I must have led a very sheltered life as I have only seen cockroaches in films (MIB?) I had an infestation of flying ants once, but I don't think that compares really.

Cassoulet Cafe said...

But isn't there an "r" in there somewhere? Maybe it's just another "h" :)
That is seriously interesting that you said that about the so called Palmetto bug...I have seen this term used on youtube of "Palmetto bug infestations" when they are actually BIG OL' ROACHES! Dee-scusting. It is what it is! Sheesh.
I had a terrible experience at Epcot with my in laws too! Though it involved seagull poop.

Cassoulet Cafe said...

It is far too cold in England for roaches :)
Consider yourself lucky! They like humid, moist places. OH and I was trying to find the roach from MIB for my post, but I never did find one.
To me every roach is nasty like that one. lol

Cris, Artist in Oregon said...

I dont know whether to laugh or scream. :))I would have died had that happened to me. One thing about having three cats is they catch everything.. One HUMONGUS spider sent me finding an exterminator FAST.... YUCK.
Now they come every other month and I will give up chocolate over giving up that bi monthly spraying. :)))

Cassoulet Cafe said...

If that would make you die, just WAIT until the next installment. I have cockroach stories that'll give you a heart attack.

~TessaScoffs said...

HIGH-larious. Another roach story: My parents travelled down to Florida to help my grandmother move house. They were all in the kitchen, chatting or something, when my mother noticed a cockroach slowly walking across the countertop. Her eyes must've given her away because my grandmother, following my mother's the line of sight, turned to look at the roach and then SMACKED it with her bare hand. What is it with my family and roaches?

Cassoulet Cafe said...

Let's do corresponding cockroach chronicles! :) I have a sick fasination with disgusting roach encounters (because I"m so terrified).

Fifi Flowers said...

UGH! What more could you possibly tell us... this is like a soap opera!

Cassoulet Cafe said...

It does get worse. :)

La Belette Rouge said...

Corfu Cuz: For some reason bugs and spiders just do not freak me out. Now, give me a snake near my home and I am moving. When we moved to Vegas for a year I called the Chamber of commerce to find out how many people a year were killed from snake bites in their home. They told me zero. I still think they are lying.
Your Samos Sistre

suburban psychosis said...

I had one fly into my hair when I was 12. A Texas pine tree roach! I screamed bloody murder in our backyard at 10pm at night. I woke up the neighbors on both sides of us. I have been terrified ever since! I stayed in the hot shower combing my hair for an hour.

Cassoulet Cafe said...

Suburban....I would have simply DIED. Yep. Dead. Pushin' up daisies. Bought the farm.

I am traumatized by your story you poor, poor thing.