Saturday, 5 October 2013

Wasps prefer Starbucks


Photo courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net (Rosemary Ratcliffe)

I met my cousin Pat for coffee at Starbucks yesterday, and something terrible happened.
We were in mid-gossip when I felt a prick between my second and third toe. My sandal went flying and so did a tiny little wasp which had insinuated itself into my shoe.
"Quick," I said to Pat. "Can you go in and get some ice? She came back with a barista who was holding a teaming bag of ice wrapped in a cloth.
You realize, of course, that there isn't much flesh on your toes, so the little bastard manage to stick its stinger right into the bone of my toe. And then he died a well-earned and nasty death under my shoe.
Funnily enough, it didn't swell or hurt, so I continued my conversation with Pat and I went off to do some errands. About 3 a.m., my foot started to hurt like a bitch. The itch was so bad, that the sensation travelled to my other foot and up both my legs.
So I crawled out of bed and reached for the white wine vinegar and a Benadryl.
I heard about the vinegar thing on Dr. Oz and it works but only if you catch the itch in the early stages. So all it did for me was make me smell like a well-dressed salad.
Once the Benadryl kicked in, I finally got to sleep but the foot started pounding again this morning.
I have a condition which is called large local reaction, which means if I get stung by an insect or bitten by a spider, the area blows up and stings for days and days. The reaction I got yesterday has made me ponder cutting off my toes.
It pissed me off because I had managed to get through an entire season without a wasp sting, though the spiders in my back garden had bitten my ass at least ten times. Spiders are particularly vicious creatures because they are not content to bite you once; they like to take a few slices out of your hide for good measure.
Anyway, the wasp sting got me thinking about something I heard on CBC Morning with Tom Power the other day. Apparently, this time of year, the queen wasps make an over abundance of nectar -- too much for the wasp clan, or whatever they are called. The excess nectar becomes fermented and all the drones get blasted on it, much like my old crew at the Georgetown on a Friday night. Not only are they polluted, but they're also nasty drunks who thinking nothing of attacking an unsuspecting coffee lover like myself.
Hah.
So a word of caution to all of you.
Stay off the patio at Starbucks until the snow flies.
And if you see a drunk wasp, call 9-1-1.
Safety. It's your responsibility.

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