Friday, May 8, 2009

A Bug's Life F5

From Sophia:
As I was walking the beach today, I was surprised and delighted to find it swarming with ladybugs. The sweet little red beetles are one of my favorite insects and also my daughter's blogname--though as of this morning she was thinking of changing it to Butterfly. I'll keep you posted.
This got me thinking about spiritual insect trivia: Did you know that medieval mystics and theologians esteemed the bee for its dedicated work and transformation of ordinary ingredients into sweetness? That Spider Woman is an important creator Goddess to many Native American tribes? Or that Francis of Assisi was reminded of Jesus not only by lambs being led to slaughter, but also by worms (think "I am a worm and no man" from the Psalms)-- so he picked them up and took them out of stomping-vulnerable spots?!
In that spirit, this week's Friday Five is a magical mystery tour through God's garden of creepy crawlies!

1. Ladybugs or ladybirds? Pillbugs or roly-polys? Jesus bugs or water skeeters? Any other interesting regional or familial name variations?
Ladybugs, roly-polys, and water-skeeters, definitely! And then there's the local "water bug", which sometimes come into our homes. Other folks call them roaches, but of course, we're too clean and well-bred for that!

2. Stomp on spiders, carry them outside, or peacefully co-exist?
I generally have to get someone else to stomp on them. I have an irrational fear of spiders and other creepy-crawlies.
In fairness to myself, I have an almost-healed spider bite on my leg. I was bitten in the house in Nov. 2000. 8 1/2 years. Sigh.

3. Favorite insect?
The daddy-longlegs or grandaddy-longlegs spider. Also known as harvestman spiders. These gangly critters don't inspire terror, and I can manage to relocate them when necessary. Since they eat mosquitoes, they're among my favorite critters. I've been told that they are among the most venomous of the spiders, but their teeth are too small to pierce human skin. My grandparents taught me that they are friendly, and that lesson stuck.

4. Least favorite?
Almost anything. Especially the cutworms that devastated lasy years squashes.

5. Got any good bug stories to share?

Bonus question: share a poem, song, quotation, etc. about insects.

I'm sure I learned this one at Girl Scout camp once upon a time:

I woke up Sunday mornin', I looked upon the wall
The 'skeeters and the bedbugs were playin' a game of ball
The score was six to nothin'; the 'skeeters were ahead.
The bedbugs hit a home run and knocked me out of bed.
(I'm singin') Eeny meenie and a-miney moe
Catch a whiffer-whoffer by the toe
And if he hollers, hollers, hollers, let him go
(I'm singin') Eeny meenie and a-miney moe


  1. Great Girl Scount song! Sorry to hear about the spider bite.

  2. Oh, I didn't even think about the daddy long-legs spiders! I used to get a little grossed out by the way they sit there and bob up and down... I'm mostly ok with them now, so long as they aren't clustered all together like a bobbing invasion.

    I'm sorry to hear about the bite, especially that you've had such a long recovery. That's awful.

  3. Holy smoke! That was one nasty spider bite!

  4. We do have waterbugs and they are different from roaches--they have wings and roaches don't, at least that is how it has been 'splained to me.

  5. oh yes....especially as a child I loved the daddy long legs...!

  6. We have water bugs here, too. They look like giant roaches, but some fly.


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