Mightier Than The Pen

Making The World A Bitter Place

*Almost* All Things Great and Small

with one comment

Few creatures drive me into a murderous rage as do mosquitoes. Fortunately, I have the perfect outlet for the resultant aggressiveness: a zapper paddle.

About ten years ago, my in-laws were staying with us,  and were roused in the middle of the night by the following series of sounds emanating from our bedroom:

Paff! Paff!
Swish-Whap! Whap! Whap!

In case that eloquent, cogent narration somehow failed to convey the sequence of events, that was me flailing at a mosquito somewhere near my pillow; turning on the light; fetching a random item of dirty laundry from the hamper; swinging away and eventually crushing that bit of bloodsucking hellspawn into a blotch on the wall, producing a victory yelp, followed by turning off the light and returning to bed.

No doubt this midnight sound and light show provided all the entertainment my wife’s folks sought at that hour, but they knew talent when they saw it, and soon purchased a simple contraption that has paid great dividends in the murderous catharsis department ever since: it looks like a badminton racket (if one is mentioning badminton, is one allowed to use that déclassé spelling in the same sentence, or must one use racquet?) with a button on the handle. Press the button and a current flows through the wire mesh of the racket top, zapping whatever deserving vermin with which it happens to make contact (the current is enough to hurt a person slightly, but otherwise does no harm).

Different mosquitoes seem to die in myriad ways with this zapper. Some merely stick to the mesh, apparently bonded to it as a portion of their exoskeleton cooks; some actually channel sparks up and down their writhing little bodies; a few do me the favor of exploding dramatically with a satisfying “pop!”

Lest it seem that I revel in the destruction of fellow life forms, rest assured that mosquitoes are not life forms in any reasonable sense: they fill no indispensable ecological niche, pollinate no (or vanishingly few) plants and exist merely to reproduce by feeding their eggs with blood. I rather suspect that their existence stems from some sort of cosmic joke.

Ministering angel 1: Lord, what a wonderful universe!
Lord: Indeed, but I must say that was predictable, given My nature. I have an itch to do something different.
Ministering angel 1: Different? In what way? Will You create another universe?
Lord: No, this one will do. I’ll just create a group of creatures so purposeless and annoying – not to mention disease-ridden – that man’s ego will be kept in check.
Ministering angel 2: Do you mean politicians, Lord?
Lord: No, but the way you think has found favor in My eyes. I shall make those, too.

So I shall continue to roast mosquitoes at every opportunity, whether or not avian flu is upon us.

Anyone know where I can get AA batteries in bulk?


Written by Thag

May 8, 2010 at 7:02 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Tagged with , , ,

One Response

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  1. This wonderful toy is also one of my favorites. Every Rice-Krispies-like sound it produces sings a song of thanks to you for giving it to me as a birthday gift.


    May 8, 2010 at 7:31 pm

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