Monday, August 06, 2007


Wasps, it seems, are breaking all the rules. Seriously - when did wasps start coming out at night? They never taught me this at school. It's simply not supposed to happen.

It all started a couple of weeks ago. I am up late, as usual, when I'm alerted to the amplified buzzing of a wasp battering itself senseless inside the shade of the floor lamp. Normally in the case of such an invasion, I would simply give in and go to bed. But I am in the middle of a network game of Settlers of Catan and there's no way I'm flaking, because I really am that much of a geek when it comes to my stats.

So between turns, I find myself standing in my living room waving the lamp out of the window in the vain hope that the wasp will notice that it's actually night time and go back to its nest to get some sleep so it will be refreshed & sprightly in the morning, ready for a long hard day of stinging people.

But the wasp is not having any of it, and promptly flies straight back in WITH TWO OF ITS MATES. My lamp-waving, it seems, has merely served as a welcoming beacon for all the wasps in the neighbourhood, of which there suddenly seem to be rather a lot.

I look at the window and there are five more wasps crawling around on the outside. Peering into the darkness, I see a cloudy, seething mass of wasps swarming around the nearby streetlight. It's around this time that I start to panic. To prevent the situation from escalating I have no choice but to close the window, effectively trapping myself in the room with three angry, stingy wasps.

But my game of Settlers is only halfway through, and so I carry on in what is to become the least fun game of anything I have ever played in my life; for 20 minutes I am ducking and flapping and desperately hoping that someone, anyone, will just WIN THE GAME for crying out loud, so I can get out of the room. And all the time I can hear the incessant tap tap tap of more wasps smashing themselves against the window - the only way they could be more eager to get in would be if I were smothered in jam and having fifty picnics all at once.

Finally, mercifully, the game comes to an end and I retreat with great urgency to the bedroom where I wake up the good natured slacker and tell him that THERE ARE WASPS EVERYWHERE, A ZILLION WASPS ARE TRYING TO KILL ME. But the slacker is no slacker when it comes to pandering to my unreasonable requests to rid the house of insects at all hours of the day and night, and he duly crawls out of bed and hurls each and every one of their sorry asses back out of the window, while I shriek helpful encouragements from behind the door, such as "GET IT!!!!" and "DON'T LET IT COME BACK IN!!!!!"

Ever since then the wasps have been out in force every night - faintly tapping, tapping at my chamber door.

I was fully prepared for a zombie invasion, but this? As I sit imprisoned in my living room with all the windows tightly shut on the hottest night of the year so far... I can do without it, I tell you.


  1. Eugh! I'm not keen on wasps either, but I had a scare of my own last night. There I was, lounging on the sofa with my feet up on a cushion. No shoes or socks on, just trying to keep cool.

    And suddenly I spotted something moving only inches from my feet.

    It was a big beetle. Must've been an inch long.

    I gasped, got my feet off that cushion like it was on fire, and called for urgent assistance. We (I say 'we' but I was about ten feet away, cowering and jibbering) managed to get the beetle into a jar and put it out of the door. But it didn't half cling onto that cushion, I can tell you.

    Methinks it's time animals, however small, realised their place it outside, not in. We should start a campaign.

  2. i killed a giant bug with my wee shoe the other night. you just need a new sign, that's all. are wasps color blind?

  3. Ooooo, ick! Wasps!

    Someone once told me that you can spray a wasp with hairspray to immobilize it and then squash it fearlessly . . . I've never tried it so I can't vouch (plus there's the small fact that I don't own any hairspray), but it might be worth a go!

  4. I got terrorised by wasps in my bedroom one night. Wankers. I tried everything, swatting away, turning my fan on full blast and trying to blow them out the window, standing in the corner screaming at them to just go away, the works. Eventually, I gave in. I switched the light off so's not to waste energy, and left the room.

    5 minutes later I came back to see if they'd made a nest on my shelves or something, and to my surprise I found NOT ONE wasp in my room! After slamming the window shut so no more could get in, I checked every nook and cranny to find where the fuckers were hiding. Answer: Nowhere. They had promptly gone whence they came.

    It has happened two nights since then, and this method of "Turn the lights off and leave the room" has worked each time.Just make sure you leave the window open so they can get the fuck out.

    God, I hate wasps.

  5. Ah, love Settler of Catan. I've only ever played the board game version though.

    Also, I got stung this summer by a wasp for the first time in my life. It flew in my shoe and stung me on my toe and it hurt like a son-of-a-bitch.

  6. Similar wasp problem here, in the town of Londinium. Although they somehow get into the flat via the loft.
    Which is bad.
    Because the loft hole is in the bathroom.
    So add all the panic, but with your trousers around your ankles in a smaller room. Not good.

    We also had a spider that was so big it wouldn't fit under the glass. Also. Not. Good.
    It cracked the pavement when it got flung out the wndow it was that big.
    Ya know, by the time the zombies come and get us, we'll all be the slaves of monster bugs...

  7. Eew. Grossgrossgross! I know there are nocturnal wasps, maybe this season the conditions were right for a nocturnal wasp boom?Look up ichneumonids in a search engine and see if that's the wasp that's buzzing 'nevermore'.

    My own back yard (in the city mind you) has been been a freaking insectarium this summer. I personally cannot wait until the frost comes and kills off all that biodiversity. Then and only then will I be able to enjoy my yard.

  8. This is what giant cans of wasp-killer spray are for.

    Get the nests. Wasps must pay.

  9. I think you may have all the wasps - haven't seen a single one in Edinburgh. Still, not long until the other buzzy annoying things - students! - arrive. Wait, I'm insulting myself!

    Having just peed myself at your Shaun of the Dead knitted folk, and read most of your archives, I think I will now proceed to add you to my RSS reader!