Friday, May 6, 2011


I was trapped.
There was no where to go. Absolutely no where. Helplessness, oh the helplessness!
I had tried calling out into the floor vents, hoping the teacher next door could hear me.  I tried calling her cell and she didn't answer.
So completely trapped.

And he wasn't leaving his post. He was completely in control, and I was his hostage. What for? Oh I couldn't tell you that. Bread crumbs? Sugar cubes? All the cans of RAID in the world? Oh, RAID. What I wouldn't do for a big, ole stinky can of RAID right now.

People say cockroaches aren't intelligent. I beg to differ. Ok, maybe it's not intelligence, but they can smell fear. They're drawn to fear and loathing the same way they're drawn to putrid corners, filth and darkness. And me. Good grief, why me? They've crawled over my toes, hidden in my showers, flown at my face then chased me around the house. Yes, that happened. You can weep for me, it's all right. I almost did. Horror, people. Sheer horror. And now, one of the biggest I had ever seen was guarding my classroom door right before the morning rush. If anyone opened that door, he would viciously attack my poor, sweet, hyperactive students. I couldn't have that.
But I also couldn't have him touching me either.

People have wondered why I didn't throw my shoe at him. To that I reply: Do you really know where that thing's BEEN?! And you want that tainting MY footwear? What if I miss and he retaliates with a direct attack?! Or worse, an air raid?! What if I can't get his guts off of my fabulous sandals? Squishing is just NOT happening, people.
I'm a sprayer. Arm me with a can of RAID, and, from a safe distance I'm a fearless, relentless warrior. I fill their environment with insect-deadly chemicals and then let them slowly suffocate. It's a just death for demons that crawled out of hell. And no, I don't feel strongly about this; why do you ask?

We regarded each other, the vile roach--was that a smug twitch of those revolting antennae?--and I, torn between determination, hatred, and panic. It didn't help that moms and kids kept peeking through the door's window, waving, smiling, reaching for that door handed. All I could do was frantically shake my hand and wave my hands around like a madwoman. They'd thank me for it later.
And the roach again began his slippery, speedy pacing back and forth on his skinny six legs of death in front of the door jam then looping into the tiny hall way to keep me far, away, cornered. Again, so helpless.

The next door teacher called me back and, as calmly as I could, I said, "Sherry, I am being held prisoner by a giant roach at my door. Could you please have the office send a can of bug spray? Thank you."
I couldn't figure out why she was laughing. Roach-hostages are not to be mocked.

The office didn't send bug spray. They sent my mother-in-law who promptly stepped on the beast, splattering guts and that foul roach stench all over my classroom doorway and her cute shoes (see? gross!). "I didn't want to send spray because it smells so bad. It can't be good for you," she said.
I didn't argue, but, quite honestly, there is nothing quite as humiliating as a tall, beautiful, skinny woman vanquishing your greatest foe and then realizing she thinks you're a prissy chicken (I am so not--I like snakes, frogs, beetles, basically everything BUT roaches so there).
But, as humiliating as it was for me, I think the roach felt worse.


  1. Sarah I love reading your stories! So much life and color!

  2. you know the writing's good when I enjoy it even though it's about the object of my greatest fears and loathing!

  3. Roaches are the bane of my existence... You did well, Sarah.

  4. oh Pete....u poor thing. Yay for bug killing mil's! You make me smile! Love you.

  5. you brave brave girl. I wouldn't have been able to stay in the same room as that thing no matter where it rested. Congrats to your rescuer. Good to hear you both made it out alive. :)

  6. I killed a spider in the Coach store the other day and it was like completely vindicating. But roaches? I don't blame you. Too big. There would be a crunch. Horror.

  7. I have never before derived so much delight from a story about a cockroach...brilliantly written!
    I'm wiith you- I'm not bothered by much, but you get me within six feet of one of those suckers and it's spray city! No goo on my shoe, either ;)

  8. Haha! I have to agree with you - they are awful! My apartment became infested on time, because of some messy neighbors, and it was one of the worst things I have ever been through. Well, at least top five. : )




Good morning, Starshine! The Earth says, "Hello!"