Eatin' Bugs: Life with an Entomologist

“There’s a lizard in here.”

That proclamation from my wife carried no weight, warning, nor was it a call for help. It was just a statement. No further action required at this time and none was taken.

Such is life with my wife, an entomologist in her former life.

Entomologists are bug people. A lizard is not a bug, got it, but it eats bugs. So by extension, it gets a hall pass. For now.

Living with someone who understands bugs has its downsides. There have been countless 4-H programs where she would single me out as an unsuspecting man-on-the-street and shove a plate of sautéed crickets or meal worms in my face and proclaim to the kids, “See, this guy will eat them.”

(By the way, they are tasty, but you never quite get past the fact that YOU’RE EATING A BUG!!)

Life with a doctor of bug-ology means every little creature you discover in the house is not a crisis. And squealing like a 5-year old girl every time you see something creepy is apparently not an aphrodisiac. Grow some, boy.

So we’ve had to set boundaries.

Rule one: roaches are disgusting. No, they don’t attack and don’t bite, but they are nasty. On this, we pretty much agree. What I’ve had to live with, though, is that one roach does not an infestation make; they can come in from outside.

That’s her take. As far as I’m concerned, one roach is reason enough to call professional exterminators to come tent our house and fumigate it with DDT while we move to a motel. Roaches die.

Scorpions also die. We live on a heavily wooded lot and occasionally get scorpions inside. Our version has very little venom and the only downside of getting stung is a little pain. Or so I’m told.

I’ve never been stung by a scorpion but she has. Twice. The result was language that would get your mouth washed out with soap as a kid. (Bonus: tequila helps get over the pain. Or so I’m told. I could only do a sympathy sip.)

Ants in the house are not acceptable. Neither are flies.

Spiders? Spiders are not considered evil ‘round her. Unfortunately, spiders mean spider housing, and…

spider webs are a no-no,
so the spider must go-go.
They don’t always die, though;
sometimes they just get relo’d

(That’s ‘relocated’. To the outdoors. Sorry, I got caught up in the moment.)

I must say, living with an entomologist has taught me a lot about bees. As a result, I do not run, nor even flinch, in the presence of any bee or wasp. Yes, I do kill wasps nesting on the house, and I don’t tolerate carpenter bees burrowing into the wood siding, but if you’re a bee just buzzing around, welcome.

We also have a few crickets. A portion of our basement is living space; the other part is cool, dark storage. I’ve intended for that part to become a wine cellar, but wine around here has as long of a life span as chocolate does at your house, so crickets occupy that space.


As long as I’m not having to harvest them for snacks, I’m all good. Besides, they’re good lizard snacks, and as far as I know, we still have a house guest.

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