Ant and Be


There’s nothing like discovering a home invasion first thing in the morning. You hardly need coffee after a surprise like that.

It was foggy inside (my head) and outside (the house) this particular morning, par for the course of a Northern California summer (insert Mark Twain remark here). But as I reached for my remaining favorite coffee cup*, I noticed that the teeny kitchen counter was teeming with ants.

I had been invaded while I slept!

I removed them with wet paper towels, shuddering and trying not to scream. How can anything so small be so gross? As I tossed the carcasses into the garbage and hastily removed the evidence to the bin outside, it occurred to me that the Oakland hills may in fact be ant hills.

Think about it.


After a gentle reader gently nudged me to update, I added the latest Covet and then noticed how long it had been since I posted anything. Combining Sloth and Envy! Also that I seem to have been taking the “A picture is worth a thousand words” adage literally, since it’s practically become a picture book around here.

Time to catch up on my non-fabulous life.


The Ant Invasion Day also included:

  • A broken glass on the kitchen floor, which I noticed by stepping on the wet remains while recoiling from the ants. I now have two glasses besides the Elvis movie ones which I’m afraid to use with the Commando Cats on the prowl. I have been reduced to acrylic glasses which almost immediately got scratched and now have the look of perma-fog. A minor hardship for the aesthetically inclined.
  • Going to the hardware store to buy ant traps, I passed a guy with a cute pit bull. I asked if I could pet her, and he agreed, so I petted her and told her boy how beautiful and good-natured she was. “Yeah,” he observed, “if I could, I’d marry her. Least I know she’d be faithful, know what I’m saying?” He smiled, displaying all gold front teeth. He’d be quite the catch, too.
  • On my way home, there was someone being arrested at the gas station on the corner. Again. And when I got home, I noticed smoldering remains across the street. Neighbor B, returned from Florida, miracle-free, informed me that someone had left a stolen car there, then come back later to torch it. Just another day in Oakland.
  • The Safeway has been remodeled and improved, which means that nothing is where it was and all the customers are wandering around in there like something out of Night of the Living Dead. I finally located the fizzy Calistoga water among the soda (the non-fizzy water is stored several aisles over), and was putting it my cart when Ray the Safeway Guy held up a bottle of blood orange soda and urged me to try it. “It’s a real screamer! Try it once and you’re hooked, just like Pall Malls.”

Who could resist? And it turned out he was right. After I put the bottle in my cart, the Temptations came on, and Ray started doing the Temptations walk down the aisle. He convinced me to join him on his way back, so there we were, dancing down the soda aisle. Ray may have missed his calling.

Just another day in Oakland.

*It’s a reproduction of the classic New York take-out cup with the legend “We are happy to serve you”, only in ceramic. It’s Number One because of the untimely demise of my irreplaceable daisy mug in the kitchen sink. There may be a conspiracy here.

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