|Posted by douggoodman on October 17, 2012 at 8:15 AM|
I drop off my daughter and her best friend at school in the mornings, and sometimes we have some pretty interesting conversations, like today, when one of these young women said that she had never been told about the "birds and the bees." This is where she would be screaming at me to put on the brakes.
"I've been to the classes and I know, but nobody has ever explained to me why people talk specifically about birds and bees."
So her best friend got to tell her about birds and bees. Her best friend started: there are these things called birds, and they fly in the sky.
I added that bees make honey, and that while many people think bears live off of honey, the bears actually devour the entire honeycomb, including the larva.
Somehow, this got twisted into me describing what I thought were the scariest creatures of the natural world. "The horror movie monsters of nature," I put it. In short: wasps.
We all agreed wasps are scary-looking. There is just something vicious about the black and yellow patterns, the bulging eyes, and those bloated segments. And then there is their audacity, too. Many bugs will try to run from you if you disturb them, but a wasp will charge you like a male silverback gorilla. But that wasn't where I was really going. After mentioning how horrible these monsters were, I had to introduce the young women to emerald wasps. These monsters turn cockroaches into zombies and then leave them paralyzed while the wasp larva eat them alive!
And then there are the bee-killing wasps, which attack bee colonies by ripping the heads off bees! They kill the entire colony to dine on bee larvae! (I'm sure that if bees went on campouts, they'd tell horror stories of serial killer wasps and wasps that murder all the parents to eat the young.)
Go figure, one of the girls said she thought she had a phobia of bees. I suggested she read the Pop-Up Book of Phobias to help her.