Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Tuna Girl vs. the Winged Creature of Death

I talked on the phone with my husband for almost an hour last night. It was great. We laughed and teased each other. It was exactly what I needed.

During our conversation, I was sitting on my bed. At one point, something happened to catch my eye in the attached bathroom. It looked like something brown had flown out of the air vent and into the shower.

I kept right on talking with the man I love and told myself that a piece of leaf, or maybe even a moth, had just dislodged itself from my vent.

But as much as I wanted to believe it, I'm not so good with self delusion.

"I have to go in the bathroom and check for a bug," I told the hubby.

"A big one?" he asked.

And I spied my nemesis on the floor just along the baseboard.

"Fuck yeah."

There was then an uncomfortably long silence while I stared down the winged creature of death (better known as a bayou cockroach).

"I have to kill it," I told my husband. "I cannot live in this house until I know it as been vanquished. Did you leave any boots here? Is there a boot in your closet? I'm getting a boot. Oh my god!" A mere shoe wouldn't do it. And my speech was accelerating and accelerating.

I dove into my husband's closet and snatched out a boot before he could even tell me if there was one in there or not.

"I hate this! He's in the corner. I'm never gonna get him in one swat."

I raised that boot high, keeping an unwavering eye on the hissing bug of doom and despair for fear that it would sense danger and fly in my face.

"Oh my god. Oh my god. Oh my god!"

I swung and hit him, but he was saved by his evil genius plan to hug the angle of the wall. But he was also stunned enough to fly a few feet in the air and back behind the toilet.

This is when I screeched and flapped my hands like a little girl.

"Eek! Eek! Eek! He flew behind the toilet. Now how am I going to get him? I can't just leave him there. Oh my god! I hate this!"

This is when the sound of laughter penetrated my terror-gripped brain. He was laughing at me. My very own bug-killer, who is half a planet away and of no use to me now, was laughing at me. Fucker.

"Are you laughing at me? It's fucking huge. I fucking hate this. This is your fucking job! Oh shit! Am I going to get you in trouble for swearing on this line?"

More laughter.


"I'm going to fucking shut it in the bathroom and go get some fucking spray," I declared as a closed the grotesque prehistoric bringer-of-evil in the bathroom. Except that there is a two-inch gap between the bottom of the door and the floor.

"Shit. Fuck. Damn. If I don't stand guard by the door he might get into the bedroom. What am I going to do?"

"Don't take you eyes off it," was my beloved's brilliant advice.

So I opened the door to see if he had moved into a more squashing friendly area. And I couldn't find him at all.

"Oh my god! I can't find him! What if he made it into the bedroom already? We'll have to move unless I find him!" I threw the boot into the middle of the room to see if I could startle him enough to reveal his position. But he must have been trained in fucking stealth, because I couldn't find him anywhere.

I could just picture him enduring Navy SEAL-type training with a little pair of six-legged camos and a tiny M-16 strapped to his back. Sir, yes, sir!

"Walk in there and look around," the love of my life advised.

"Fuck that! You do it. He might be waiting to attack me!" In desperation, I slammed the door shut again and stuffed my dirty sweatshirt in the gap at the floor. And I scrambled to replace my sacrificed weapon with the other boot from the pair.

"Okay. I'm sorry." I told my husband while trying to regain my equilibrium. "So, you're at war and all. How's that going?"

More laughter.

I talked to my husband for about ten more minutes, all the while keeping my eyes glued to the bottom of the bathroom door. I was a sentry, damn it, and I took my duties seriously.

As we said goodnight I told my husband, "Okay. I'm off to do battle with my winged foe."

"Goodnight my huntress," he teased me.

The enemy had made the mistake of taking up position under a cart with wheels. I ever so slowly rolled the cart aside, and finished off the little satanic bugger with one mighty swipe with my combat boot.

But now came the worst part. I had to scrape the carcass up off the floor and flush it down the toilet.

I actually considered leaving my defeated friend under the boot for the cleaning ladies to find in the morning, but I do have some shame. I wrapped my hand in enough toilet paper to cushion the fall of the Roman empire and I screeched a war cry (it may have sounded like "eek eek eek" or "oh my god oh my god oh my god") and I flung that fucker in the toilet.

Where he proceeded to spin around and around through three toilet flushes. I got to see his dismembered corps slowly disintegrate and become transparent.

It wasn't until I hummed taps that he gave up the ghost.

It is this. THIS! THIS is what I hate most about my husband being deployed.

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