Monday, July 2, 2007

Non-Love Bugs

*sigh* Yeah, I know... it’s been a while. Yes, I’m still alive.

Work has been sporadic. One day we’re furiously trying to get work out and another day we’re sitting around picking our nose and playing solitaire (well, for me, it’s Double or this weird little shoot’em game). But the biggest pain in the ass at work right now isn’t the inconsistent workflow. It’s the damn bugs.

Yes, we’re infested. About 3 months ago we noticed these pesty little gnats everywhere. At first we thought it was just in our pre-press department, but then everyone in our half of the building was complaining about them. We thought perhaps they were breeding on some long-forgotten unemptied trash can, feasting on someone’s month-old lunch. But after searching everywhere we came up with nothing, just a steady increase in the number of flying pests.

We have a pest-control guy come by once a month and spray, but apparently his magic bug-killing spray has no effect on fruit flies (yes, that’s what they are). We informed Mr. Pest Control Guy about our infestation and he supplied us with several prison-sized cans of super nuclear bug killing spray.

That day, after we had all had safely stored away any food, coffee, candy and plants and then left to go home, they fumigated the entire building. We all arrived the next morning, hoping to discover thousands of mini-bug carcasses all over every flat surface.

Nada. Nothing. In fact, we think this spray only acted as an aphrodisiac and spurned them on to keep breeding. How bad can this infestation be, you ask? Well, there’s four of us in our department, and each of us was averaging 7-12 kills a day (go on, do the math, I’ll wait). And we were in now way even making a dent in the growing population.

Two months ago the pest-control man returned and the whole office bitched him out again. By this time the entire business personnel had been madly smashing fruit flies. The startling sound of *THWACK!* and *THUMP!* could be heard all day long at various intervals, from one corner of the building to the other.

So this time Mr. Pest Control Guy left several strange bottle traps at various spots. These bottle traps have an inch of Tang®-looking fluid in the bottom. In theory, this sweet liquid should attract the fruit flies, whereupon they fly down into the bottle thru a tiny opening and are either too stupid to figure out how to get out or, preferably, drown in the Tang®.

Great theory. Too bad this one didn't work either. Instead, after a week, each bottle had less than 5 dead bugs but a plethora of large, furry, white spots of mold. So instead of getting rid of the bugs we're harvesting our own tainted supply of Penicillin.

Now we're down to a few weeks ago. Mr. Pest Control Man returns and we point out the Tang and Penicillin soup mixture with very few flies. The good news is the number of kills has dropped. The bad news is (besides the mold) we still have flies. This time Mr. Pest Control Guy pours some magically liquid into all of our plants (including my little bamboo plant), claiming that sometimes these fruit flies will have a colony in ordinary house plant soil. While he says this, he's eyeing my little bamboo plant with suspicion.

"Dude, this little plant doesn't even have soil. It's water and rocks, and I change the water frequently. If I don't, the plant starts to die."

I must have slipped into speaking Russian because he looked at me like I was a total retard. And he poured the magical bug-killing liquid into my bamboo plant anyway. Luckily, after 2 weeks, my plant is still alive.

Unfortunately, we still have bugs. Yes, the numbers have dropped. We're only killing about 3 a day now. But we all still look like a bunch of tweakers, waving our hands around and slapping various body parts all day.

Meth addicts ain't got nothing on us.


lakelady said...

sure fire way to kill fruit flies. We get them here in northern Michigan at the end of every summer. It's fruit country up her ya know. Put a glass or saucer or whatever of wine out with a few drops of dish soap in it (in your case maybe a few of these). The flies are attracted to the wine but the soap breaks the surface tension so that instead of landing on the surface and slurping up lots of wine they drown. Works for me every time. Try it and let me know how it goes.

KD said...

Ohhh, I like the former poster's idea! This means you can bring a few bottles of wine into the office :) Make sure to test the bottle a few times a day, you know, just to make sure the flies haven't penetrated the cork ;)

Oh, and another thing. Where the hell do you find these fun little games??? Not only am I still addicted to one you posted more than a year ago, but I just spent half an hour playing the shooter game when I was wanting to reply to your post! Addictive!!!