Posted by Robert Edler
It’s bad enough that Mlle. Renee and I are going to be plagued by pyromaniacs posing as patriotic Americans tomorrow afternoon and evening by exploding bomb-grade fireworks during a severe drought, but apparently they couldn’t wait! So they began setting off their concussive cacophony as soon as the sun set this evening. And something new has been added to annoy us older humans and canines … a firecracker and/or bomb that sounds like a cannon burst or dynamite explosion. Who knows, maybe it was dynamite. Fearing the explosives would ignite the currently dried lawn grasses, I went out on my back deck to see where the fireworks were being set off. I opened my door and I saw a Martian staring into my eyes!!!
Well, I knew it wasn’t a Martian … but it could have been a mini-triffid! But I recognized it as a praying mantis. I don’t know why, but mantises don’t seem to be afraid of humans. Naturally, I named this one Marvin. At least I hope this one was male … and not female. If it was a female, she might have been sizing up my head and figuring how big she would have to grow to bite it off!
My mother love mantises and she would let them crawl all over her hands and arms as she moved them to her backdoor garden to protect her flowers from summer’s chewing and chomping insects. She used to name them, and would visit them in the garden sticking her hand out so they could jump on it. Then as she talked to them, they would sit there moving their heads back and forth as if they were listening to her.
I never did have the heart to tell her that they were related to the cockroaches that she hated.
They do look a little like mini-Martians. Maybe I could catch one, and convince the juvenile pyromaniacs that they really are Martians and they’re attracted by the sound of fireworks exploding. And the when they eat, they prefer the fingers of sleeping boys that smell of gunpowder!