I have a story to tell you that’s really more than a story. It’s more of a saga, like The Thorn Birds, just without the monsignor sex. And I realize I have some nerve just showing up here after being missing for so long, but I assure you I am busy, which is why this saga was particularly painful. Even more painful than that initial intrusion by Ralph de Bricassart.
I’m breaking it into sections, because saga.
Edsel had a dark spot in his ear. As we know, his ear has a lot of real estate
and it turns out, a tick had moved in. It must have felt so luxurious to said tick, like moving to a ranch in Montana after living in Manhattan. Edsel’s original name was Montana, and I guess we now understand why.
Anyway, I grabbed my tweezers and deleted said tick from our lives before I could think about it. Then I flapped my hands around heebie-jeeebily for a bit and carried on with my life. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this, but I am helping with a book we are writing at work. I am enjoying it, but it turns out books are a lot of work. So after several very manly minutes of flapping about disgustedly, I returned to thinking about work.
Edsel presented with a spot on his snout, and I enjoy my medical use of “presented” because I think about health a lot and now I have become a doctor. Of medicine, not of Dre.
Or of Pepper.
We had slept in the same room together all night, Eds and I had, so I was extra heebed and jeebed when, the next morning, he leapt on my bed with what I thought was a scab on his snout but it was
I should’ve put this on TikTock.
This time, after I removed said tick from the premises, I not only bleached those tweezers like I was Howard Hughes, I also placed them in the cat cupboard, along with the eye ointments and flea medicine. Those tweezers have been relegated to pet use. And speaking of flea medicine, I pay $9,087 a month for Revolution for all the pets, a flea
treatment that is supposed to work. And that is when I called my vet and said, “I spent $49.067 billion on Revolution every month, yet I am seeing ticks on my dog. Can you tell me what gives?”
As you can imagine, my local vet has named a wing of the office after me, so they were happy to tell me what gives, which is that A(, and I like how I fucked that up and I’m leaving it, but A(, Revolution does kill ticks but not for 36 hours
and )B(: it’s the worst tick season on record. Ever. We’ve ticked again, like we did last summer, but only way worse.
Isn’t it enough we’re having a plague? We also have to get ticked off?
My vet prescribed me three vials and one chew of this NEW flea and tick treatment that you only have to apply every three months, which is good, because any time I apply that topical stuff onto the shoulderblades of the cats, they act the same way my mother does if you tell her Nixon was our greatest president, a thing a high school boyfriend did once just to see my mother spontaneously combust.
Honestly, they get so OFFENDED by that topical stuff. I don’t even think they can FEEL it, yet all three of them lift their skirts and screech. Anyway, I went to the vet and spent $417 on their treatment, which I could not put on them until July 1, as that is when their Revolution was officially plum wore out.
So, the pets would be safer come July, but what about all the ticks in my yard? My milkshake brings all the ticks to my yard. What about me? What about my needs? I don’t want any malaria or whatever ticks give you. Is it trichinosis? Is that what ticks give you? Maybe I am just a doctor of Pepper. I’m at least a sergeant of Pepper.
I did not want to have some company come out and spray for bugs because every night, I drag my exhausted, overworked ass outside and watch fireflies. It’s all I got. I blankly watch fireflies and then I go to bed. And also I did not want to kill the bees because all the bees are being killed and soon we will all die of beelessness, I forget why, but stuff like that makes me decidedly nervous.
So I did what anyone would do, and that’s head to the internet, where everything is believable. After I opened a pizza parlor that specialized in pepperoni made from the hind end of Chrissy Tiegen, I asked, “How can I get rid of the ticks in my yard without spraying? Say it, don’t spray it.”
And people came back with extremely helpful suggestions, such as, Get a gila lizard.
But one person said there’s this spray you can get that’s organic and has good vibes and is a Sagittarius, and it doesn’t kill bees or fireflies or anything. It just kills, like, chiggers and ticks and tacks and the like. I looked it up and after reading good things about it, I ordered it.
I know you are going to ask what KIND of spray, because no one can do anything online anymore without having to say where you bought everything one can see in the image. “Where did you get that sky?” “What brand of telephone pole is that?” But I’m not gonna TELL you what kind cause I’m about to complain about the bug spray and I don’t wish to be sued for all my millions, as I am a doctor. Doc Marten.
The organic hippy magic bus bug spray arrived, and for this I was glad. I would be tickless! Staying drier is nicer with a little Tickless.
Imagine the great things my mind could’ve done, imagine what a good doctor I’d be, had I used my mind for something other than remembering commercials and songs from the ’70s.
That night, after work, and did I mention I work a lot? I opened the box of the hippy Mama Cass’s ham sandwich bug spray. “Just attach it to your hose and spray!” it told me.
Just…what, now? This was not disclosed in their ad.
I mean, does everybody here have a hose? Do the makers of YinYang Bug Spray for your Vibes just assume we all have hoses? Because I SORT of do, but not really. I have two hoses that came with the house—
There’s some hose in this house, there’s some hose in this house.
Dear Tee: Please don’t watch this video. I want you to stay pristine, as I imagine you. Also, your husband is going to come into the room—after he overhears these lyrics—with a large butterfly net and drag you off to the home.
On the other hand, Tee, I sort of want you to secretly memorize these lyrics and just start singing them whilst you do dishes.
Anyway, there’s some hose in this house, but one of them is covered in duct tape and the other one doesn’t have an end. Like, there’s no metal at the end. It’s just the rubber hose, with which I wish to put up your nose. HAHAHAHAHAHA. Why did we think Welcome Back, Kotter was funny?
Nevertheless, I persisted, and attempted to attach the hoses to my Free to be You and Me bug spray, and you’ll be stunned to hear it didn’t work.
Goddammit, I said, coming in covered in ticks, tacks and toes. So I ordered a hose online.
The late, late show with June in June
The hose arrived, and after a harrowing day at work, I unpacked it and went outside. It fit! It attached! It…barely went to my back yard. I was meant to spray the Age of Aquarius bug spray all around the perimeter of my yard, but this was not possible as the new hose was 14 inches long.
Goddammit, I said, coming back in with a tic.
So I ordered ANOTHER hose, to attach to the new hose.
Meet the new hose. Same as the old hose.
Today, July onest, I GOT THE NEW HOSE, and after
READING AN ENTIRE BOOK TODAY, NO, SERIOUSLY,
I unpackaged the second hose, the new Darren Stevens, and headed outside. They attached to each other! They fit inside the jug of Peace Sign bug spray! I turned the hose on with my smile, headed into the back yard, and?
It wouldn’t turn on. The damn jug didn’t spray. Turns out there’s this plastic dial at the side, that only the world’s strongest men, the kind who have to join the circus, so bemuscled are they, can turn.
GODDAMMIT, I said, all ticky tacky. I went inside and watched a YouTube video of how to use the spray. The cheerful woman in the video who probably owned a good hose straightaway just TURNED that dial like it was nothing. Determined, I headed back outside. I pulled and I tugged and I tugged and I turned and finally that DAMN thing gave a little, so I turned the water back on the hose, and?
One of the hoses? Broken. BROKEN! It sprayed all over me, all over my yard, all over yonder, and, soaked, I unscrewed it from the other new hose.
GODDAMMIT, I said, ticking like a time bomb.
I decided to just spray as much of the yard as I could using the one hose I had, but when I turned on the water, it turns out, that hose, like, expands, and it stretched all the way to the back of my yard. So I needlessly bought a second one, needlessly waited to spray while the ticks mated and flew friends in and had themselves cloned.
So finally, finally, the hose was hooked up, I was at the back of the yard, I had the turny thing on the bottle turned, and?
Nothing came out of the jug. WATER was coming out, but the level in the jug never moved.
GODDAMMIT, I said, ticked pink.
Maybe I had the nozzle the wrong way. My engineer’s mind told me to turn it the other way and maybe product would come out. So I did, and then I turned the water back on (each time I did this, I had to slog back to the faucet and then back to the end of my yard, and each time my yard seemed to get longer and longer and hotter and hotter) and then?
The spray sprayed ME. I mean, it was like a fire hose, spraying me. I think I blew back a few feet.
I had on my The Hermit t-shirt, which looks like the tarot card of The Hermit, except it’s a cat instead of a hermit, and I can tell you that I won the wet t-shirt contest going on at the home of June, over here. My Hermit shirtmit wasn’t just soaked, my entire ENSEMBLE was soaked.
Eventually, I just unscrewed the top of the hippie jug and dumped the stuff around my yard, hoping it kills something. It already killed my will to live.
Then I had to slog back through my yard, soaked, and drag the dang fire hose with me to put back on the hangy thing, and I did this with my clothes clinging to me like Melanie clung to Ashley when he returned from the war and I realize I need to get a new example. Then I had to take the broken hose, and drag IT through my yard and onto a chair, so I can return it or maybe hang self with it, I am not decided yet.
Attached please find an unretouched image of me after the whole ordeal was done.
In sum, no ticks were harmed in the making of this blog post.
And that is the end of my Thorn in my side Birds saga.