Showing Leg

It’s easy to let yourself go in Michigan. November rolls around and the soup du jour is potatoes for the next five months. You get out your extensive wardrobe of corduroy and fleece sweat clothes (and as they noted on an episode of Seinfeld, once that happens it’s a sign to the world that you’ve given up.) Any incentive I have to take a razor to my legs or armpits drops to zero.

Life is better here, once I get over the shock of seeing my white winter body (we don’t even have a full length mirror in Michigan). The next ten days are for reformation. I’ve been in Florida for less than 24 hours and I’ve shaved and spread expensive Lemon Cypress body lotion all over myself, slept 12 hours, gotten into shorts, applied suncreen, biked five miles and talked to the contractor about plans to do a small addition. Today I have to help the Snarl get hooked up with the orthopod about her knee problem (an old lacrosse or b-ball injury?) that’s impeding her running and we have to find her some means of transportation. She bikes and walks everywhere without complaint but once in a while she needs to get to the grocery store or some place further than 5 miles from campus and her apartment. What she really wants, of course, is freedom to get to the beach and who can blame her? So, once again, we’re in the market for the ever elusive, totally reliable, runs great, low mileage, safe 2,000.00 car. Wish me luck.

And yes, Mz. S– all this week I will be once again posting and commenting from the park bench- once I take care of a another problem. What ARE these? Because they have set up shop under and around my park bench and closely resemble bees. Many cranky bees. Thousands would not be an exaggeration. And they were not happy when I inadvertently dragged my electrical connection across their community of little sand mounds. Any guesses? What are they and how do I get rid of them? Soon with the answer, please…

(UPDATE! These are Miner Bees, family Andrena. And, I guess they don’t sting. They are among the first to emerge in the Spring and right now they are busy turning my park bench area into a nursery, one to a hole. I guess they are very good pollinators and very desirable in the flower garden. So, Luther Burbank’s comment not withstanding, the bee’s stay. I’ll just try to ignore the fact that they are milling about as I type.)

14 responses to “Showing Leg

  1. Venomous arthropods! Methinks they might be mud daubers. If they are mud daubers, they will only sting if pinned against your lovely, smooth, Lemon Cypress scented legs. My six men once shot water from powerful squirtguns at different angles simultaneously and eradicated a nest under our eaves trough.

    Old Mercedes Benz diesels can be bought in these parts for under $2000. And, they run on salad oil! I know because we have six of them, too. ;~)

    Isn’t there supposed to be a photo of your leg in this post?!

  2. Ooooh…not good. I’m thinking “Blue Bottle” hornets, which are ground nest wasps. Perhaps they’re not as viscious as their northern counterparts, since they nest in warm, soft sand. Anyway, the solution is exactly the same as that for an accidental spill of old bong water on carpet: you must put the bungalow up for sale and move.

  3. Could these be doodle bugs? A kind of ant killer? Maybe one of your neighbors can tell you whether to try to encourage them or get rid of them.

  4. Vespula maculifrons: This yellowjacket is found in eastern North America. Most reports indicate subterranean nests. Haviland described 10 nests, each of which had a nearly spherical ground opening about 1.5 cm in diameter. The nest looks much like that of D. maculata except the outside envelope has the consistency of charred paper. As the nest becomes larger, workers remove soil from the burrow. The soil is always deposited about 1 cm distance from the nest. According to Haviland, nests ranged from 9.5 to 30 cm in diameter. The largest nest contained eight levels of comb with over 2800 wasps present.

    This is said to be one of two yellowjacket species seen in Florida and are common across the eastern US. We had some ground nesting ones in Mississippi. Mean, nasty, generally mad at the whole world. Good luck.

    OK, will check back later. BTW, don’t go after them with Raid, it will only make them more angry. Apparently it doesn’t do much down in the nest.

  5. If those things feed on flowers, what you do is eliminate all the flowers in a 5-mile radius from your place, and starve them to death. Maybe the neighbors will help. What’s a few flowers among friends.

  6. I have done battle with ground nesting hornets before (see Stupid Things I Have Done Post) and they are feisty. Mine were using an abandoned animal burrow. Your burrows look very different. I have only seen individual wasps using the single hole burrow which they stuff with paralyzed prey and egg. But, if you are seeing thousands of cranky bee look alikes going underground, it almost has to be hornets. While I might try a few stupid ideas at getting rid of them, I don’t want to give dumb advice that will get you stung. So, a pro exterminator is my safe and sane advice.

  7. Yeah! I was hoping they’d turn out to be some “good” bee.

  8. I’ve got all my bendy parts crossed for you in the search for a perfect ride for your girl. Good luck!

    If anyone can peacefully coexist with creepy-crawlie, buzziness, it’s most definitely you.

  9. i’m just jealous that you’re there and I’m here. I want to go to Florida!!!!

    Of course, I know why Bonnie wants to meet my mother, because she wants to marry me off to Mr. P…who btw Bonnie, hates MSU and digs U of M. 🙂

  10. Tell Bonnie that old Mercedes diesels don’t run very well on diesel fuel or salad oil either! I know because we have one in the shop right now. In fact, that’s where it stays most of the time….LOL

    If those gizmos were under my bench, I’d move my bench – or maybe my butt.

  11. Bees–I would find them a huge distraction! I am amazed by you blogging from a park bench.

  12. Once again, we are on the same wave length. Yesterday’s post at my place bemoans my general letting-myself-go, and specifically mentions the legshaving issue. Also my BIRTHDAY. Hey, you know what I would really like for my BIRTHDAY? Some sort of carving that speaks to my inner eagle. 2nd day air would be fine for shipping.

  13. Romper, Stomper, Bomper, Boo!
    Tell me, tell me, tell me, do!
    Magic Mirror, tell me today –
    Did all my friends have fun at play?

    I see many DO-BEES and only a couple of DON’T-BEES in my magic mirror today…we’ll start with the DON’T-BEES: I see Meeta and MR. P WHO DIGS THE WRONG UNIVERSITY IN MICHIGAN and Kenju!

    DO-BEES: I see Bonnie and Bruce Aller and Roberta and Florida Cracker and Roxanne and Luther and Lu and Margaret and Miz S.

    Vicki remains the Queen of all DO-BEES, of course.

  14. I was just commenting to Mary that I’m not shaving my legs in honor of her birthday (and they reallllly need it). So, are you in too?

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