Walter Mencken 9 a.m., Oct. 1
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The Bee Blog
I saw this story in the Union-Tribune a week ago.
It was about brothers in Los Angeles that had a bees’ nest in their backyard. They decided the nest should be removed from their shed and that the best way to do this would be using an illegal firecracker they had.
The explosion blew out a window in their house, which cut one of them up. He needed medical attention, so off to the car they went.
But the glass cutting him wasn’t the only problem. Three angry bees flying around outside, decided to get some revenge. They stung him in the driveway. Not a big deal for most people, but it turns out he was allergic to bee venom and died of asphyxiation on the way to the emergency room.
I’m guessing that will make News of the Weird at some point.
When I was five, I found that paper wasps had a huge nest in our garage in Mira Mesa. For years I had seen wasps fly into our garage and head for the rafters. One day, I decided to watch where one flew.
Once I found the nest, I called the older brothers in for reinforcement.
It was so high, they weren’t sure what to do. I got on a ladder and used a chopstick. Nobody ever said 5-year-old make the best decisions.
I stuck the stick into the nest, and a wasp came out. It walked up the chopstick, as I slowly walked down the ladder. My brother held an empty jar for us to keep it.
I’m not sure why I didn’t drop the chopstick, but I was scared. It climbed onto my hand and promptly stung my pinky.
I ran screaming, and my mom came outside. All she kept saying as she looked at it was “I don’t see a stinger. Are you sure you were stung?”
I found out later that wasps don’t lose their stinger and die the way bees do.
My older brother than grabbed a garden house. We turned it on, and climbed into the small Ford Pinto my mom had in the garage. We rolled down the window just enough, and aimed the hose.
The nest came down and wasps were everywhere.
We waited for almost half an hour before the garage cleared out. And the nest (made from chewed up wood) was beautiful to look at and study (it still had a few eggs inside).
I’d occasionally see wasps for the next few days, fly up and look for their home. I would’ve felt bad. But I was five. And one of those little bast***s had stung me. I considered it war.
Now, I haven’t heard anything on the Killer Bees. Weren’t they supposed to be here by now?
More like this:
- The sand is full of wasps — Sept. 24, 2014
- The Unbearable Lightness of Bee-ing — Oct. 20, 2010
- Pregnant Parking, Wasps' Nests, Suggested Donations, "Arms" Hotels — Aug. 27, 2008
- The Wasp — March 3, 2008
- A Taste of Wild Honey — Aug. 17, 2000