I got a call from Amelia’s preschool teacher yesterday. Breezily, she told me that she’d “found a tick” on my daughter.
(Needless to say, if my house hadn’t been properly bathed in bleach before the Barf-o-rama last week, it is now.)
Now, I have no problems with bugs. In general, that is. Sure, mosquitoes are annoying, but they feed the bats that live in the gigantor pine tree where I plan to construct my panic room. Ants are kinda…cool. I mean, you learn a little bit about those assholes and their social structure and suddenly, it’s not as annoying that they’re crawling on your hands as you carefully prune your roses.
(fire ants are, for the record, blazing assjackets)
Earwigs are another story. Creepy fuckers.
And wasps, well, I’m allergic to them. I had an incredible colony of them growing in my birdfeeders last year – something I didn’t realize until late in the summer – and when I tell you those fuckers were everywhere, it was like they were stalking me or something. I must’ve had Wasp Sonar attached to my head or something.
It’s not the pain of the sting or the use of the Epi-Pen I’d need to stay alive, it’s knowing that I’d have to call 911 AFTER the first dose for an ambulance to properly treat me. My doctor warned me that most people with wasp allergies need a second dose.
I’ve taken epinephrine after a particularly bad reaction to some IM painkillers and let me tell you, that shit makes you feel like you’re dying. It’s temporary and it’s a hell of a lot better than actual death, but still, I’m not exactly ready to be all, HEY KIDS, WANNA WATCH MAMA SCREAM ABOUT HER HEART? I figure I’ll do enough damage to them in the long-term; they don’t need to watch a team of paramedics work on their mother.
But ticks, I don’t know much about them, besides the whole “Lyme Disease” thing.
Immediately, I thought about all of places ticks could be hiding.
LIKE ON THE BIG ITCHY BUMP ON MY LEG.
I’d assumed the bite on the back of my leg was a spider bite and left it at that. I mean, I live in Chicago; we get spiders. Sometimes, we get bitten.
Besides, I used to work at an outdoor restaurant that had spiders in the rafters. The morning chores included removing all spiders from the rafters, lest they poo on someone’s cheeseburger. By the river, man, those spiders got to be huge.
But this bump, man, it was huge. It was probably teeming with Tick-Babies. In fact, what if *I* was turning into a Tick? Like the Great Tick Mother or something. What if I was infested with Ticks? WOULD MY HAIR FALL OUT WHEN I BECAME A GIGANTIC TICK?
I didn’t know. So I did the only rational thing I could do: I made my mother look at it.
Now, for all of the problems she and I have had, she’s about the most level-headed and non-hysteric person I know. Her answer (and mine) for most problems is, “eh, it’s probably nothing. Go drink some water and lay in the sun awhile.”
Dave’s mother, on the other hand, called to tell him that she was flying somewhere for Easter and had taken out Death Insurance for the trip; payable to Dave and Dave’s brother. (My response: “what the fuck is Death Insurance? And how much is it worth?”)
Complete 180 from my mother who would have called the policy bullshit and pointed out that “you’re more likely to die in a car-crash on the way TO the airport than to die on a plane.”
She’s just like that.
So I made my mother look at the bump that was most certainly riddled with Tick Babies to tell me if I was dying or not.
Me: “OHMYGOD, IS THIS A TICK BITE?”
My Mother: “No.”
Me: “AM I DYING OF TICKNESS?”
My Mother (rolls eyes) : “No.”
Me: “AM I GOING TO TURN INTO A HUGE BALD TICK?”
My Mother (rolls eyes): “No.”
Me: “WHAT THE FUCK IS IT, THEN?”
My Mother: “Looks like a spider bite.”
Me: “Oh. Well, then. I’m starving.”
Sorry Pranksters, it appears as though I will live another day. (Hopefully, not as a tick.)
Now that we’ve ascertained that, what are YOUR weird-ass fears?