So you’re probably thinking, “What’s up with Blue Ridge Blue Collar Girl? First she writes three posts in a row about big red-eyed bugs, then she writes in nauseating detail about her husband’s bloody workshop incident. Not to mention subjecting us to her terrible puns!”
Okay, so maybe I should apologize for the puns. It’s really sort of a compulsion for me. Seriously. I have an uncontrollable urge to play with words. The puns pop nonstop into my head, I blurt them out, and before you know it, I get carried away and people are rolling their eyes and groaning.
But I digress. What I really want to talk about here is irrational fear. Neurosis. Phobia, if you will. Heart-pounding, scared-out-of-your-socks, sweating-bullets fear. I’m embarrassed to admit it, but the thing that provokes a near panic attack in me is less than 1/10th of an inch long and wide—just slightly bigger than one of the vowels in this sentence. So what is the tiny critter that makes my skin crawl as it crawls on my skin?
It’s the tick. Ick. Ticks…well…they suck.
(Sorry! There I go again! Like I said…a pun compulsion.)
And here at the doublewide, we are (as Blue Ridge Blue Collar Man says) eat up with ticks. The folks who lived here before us raised cattle that ranged all over the property, so I think that might be the reason we have such a booming tick population. And all the tall grass and weeds in the fields around us along with lots of wildlife passing through make for a sort of parasite paradise. Almost every time we walk through the yard, we pick up a tick.
You know one of the things I hate most about ticks? It’s the way they’re so…I dunno…stealthy. They’re not content just to latch onto your ankle or leg for their tick picnic, then quietly drop off. No, they furtively creep their way up your leg, looking for that perfect, out-of-the-way spot to sup your blood.
Anyway, as a result, every time I feel the slightest tickle, I am certain it is a tick tickle (I guess you’d call this a nervous tick.) I am constantly checking my legs for any little black specks making their way northward or feeling my neck or head to make sure they’re not already there. And since we’re outdoors a lot, what with gardening and lawn mowing and bird watching, I have developed a bit of an obsession with constantly checking my legs. I can’t stop thinking about ticks. Yes, I know this is quite neurotick…I mean…neurotic. And yeah, it does go back to my childhood (but I don’t wish to repulse you further with that story). But I’m not sure what to do about it but wait for cold weather when the little bloodsuckers finally go dormant. Or get counseling. Or buy a friendly little monkey who will delicately groom me.
I’ve always wondered why God made ticks. Or mosquitoes. Or chiggers, for that matter. Ah well, one of the great mysteries of life. But one thing I am profoundly grateful for:
That ticks can’t fly.