The Woes of Mosquitos

by Harvey Reid


I often wonder if Gandhi had lived on the coast of Maine, how he would have felt about the mosquitos. I read that he would watch carefully where he walked so as not to step on ants. Well, I have never had a quarrel with ants either, but I find it hard to believe that Gandhi or anyone could smile lovingly while offering themselves generously to the mosquitos. "Here, little girls, drink up...", he might say, knowing that female mosquitos are the ones that bite us. Everyone I know hates mosquitos as much as I do, and in the interest of opening some discussions in the scientific community I would like to offer my Comprehensive Theory of mosquitos (CTM) in its present, unsubstantiated form:

I. Swatting mosquitos only contributes to natural selection, and ensures that future generations will be even faster. In ancient times, mosquitos were slow enough to kill with your feet. But over thousands of years of swatting them, and having only the fastest and cleverest living to reproduce, we have genetically engineered a super-race of the bloodthirsty devils. (Even knowing this, I can't resist killing them anyway, knowing that the effect on their speed in my lifetime will be negligible. Future generations will resent my work.)

II. mosquitos are probably connected to a greater intelligence. No creature that small could have a brain (I don't even think they have brains at all- just a few bundles of neurons somewhere) big enough to allow them to do the dastardly things they do. Evidence is as follows:

* They can find entrances to anything. And what they can't get around they bite right through. They enter your car with all the windows and doors shut by coming in through the air vents to bite you. At least black flies don't bite you through your clothing. That seems a little unfair.

* They fly amazingly sophisticated evasive flight patterns. A sure indication that they are radar controlled by an alien computer. Even when you got one of those bastards trapped against a window, somehow they know what the shape of your hand is, and whenever you swat at them, they are between the cracks in your hands and fingers. It shouldn't take that many swats to kill a small insect.

* They know when your hands are busy. Like when you are lifting something heavy, and they come right in and bite you on the nose or the forehead, places they wouldn't dare touch when they know you have a free hand. They will even land on the fingers of a musician who is playing a musical instrument at high speeds. Maybe they have awards for stuff like that that they give each other.

* They can always find you, and they find you very quickly. Even if you are running down some rural byway at 10 miles an hour, through a place where there may have never been a human to practice biting on during the lifetime of the mosquitos present, these fiends will somehow come out of the swamp, find you and bite you as you run past, with no prior knowledge of what a human is and no time for strategy or counseling. How do they do it? How do they even know what to do? You'll be racing past, and they'll find a vein on your arm that you are swinging back and forth and tap right in. Our Army should study them.

* mosquitos are well-organized, and work in teams. They know that one on one, you would win, so they don't fight that way. They have a military hierarchy all worked out, and the generals send waves of young, reckless infantry at you. And while you are busy swatting them, they send their own SWAT team in and inflict heavy casualties on another part of your body. Flanking warfare.

* It is highly possible that mosquitos are actually UFO's. We are always looking for spaceships 100 feet long made out of metal. mosquitos just might be scientists of another galaxy doing genetic experiments on us and studying our DNA...

III. mosquitos get a drug-like rush from the adrenaline in your blood, and they prefer to annoy the hell out of you before they bite you. It's like speed or crack for them. In fact, this is the tendency of those demons that I just can't tolerate. It's not enough that they bite holes in your skin after biting through your clothes, suck your blood and leave a welt that itches for days. First they have to turn on their little sirens and dive-bomb you and soften you up for a while. "Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz" in your ear is one of the worst sounds ever created. They should put little mikes next to them and amplify that sound and put it in alarm clocks. Nobody could sleep through it. That sound causes anger, and I am sure that it activates your gland systems to put whatever drug the mosquitos want. They work in teams to do this, and a group of them will start working your ears from behind, skillfully using techniques of the Chinese water torture. "zzzz". Then silence. They'll let you talk to your date for 30 seconds. Then "zzzzzzz". (Random intervals are important in torture.) Meanwhile, the rest of the tribe are down biting your ankles while you are distracted. They know how long your arms are and what you can reach, and they love to bite you on the feet and ankles.

IV. mosquitos have not signed or even read the Geneva Convention on fairness in warfare. You can't raise a white flag and surrender. They don't bite you for a while and then say "This donor has had enough. Let's find a fresh one." They even have suicidal, Kamikaze mosquitos who seem to delight in just swooping in and trying to take a bite out of your forehead, or somewhere where they are sure to die. Maybe they go to Mosquito Valhalla for that. In fact, the worst ones will bite you, fill up their canteens with your blood, and then buzz around you, so when you swat them, you get a nice red blotch on your face or your shirt. That is one of the worst feelings in the world when you swat a mosquito, feeling proud of yourself, and discover that it was full of your blood. I always swear loudly. They want that, since then they will get their drug rushes from the adrenaline in the next bite.

V. mosquitos do not abide by the 14th Amendment. They do not treat us alike. They love to bite me, and I have other friends whom they invariably go after even when there are easier targets around. I feel that this is an act of vengeance on their part, since if they have a most wanted list for Mosquito Mass Murderers, I'm on it. I delight in killing those fiends, and they delight in biting me.

VI. Repellents and other folk remedies are useless. No matter what you do, you will get bit. Maybe you can slow them down, but they reign supreme. Some say if you swat them while they are biting you it will itch worse, and if you let them bite you at the beginning of the season, they will leave you be. I've heard of chemical and organic remedies and things you can eat or drink and I think they are all placebos. The only thing I ever found that worked was a cigar, and I think I have an understanding of how cigar-smoking got started in colonial times.

VII. There needs to be a more effective mosquito control program. Maybe if enough volcanos go off we'll have a freak frost in the summer and kill them all. Surely some Nobel Laureate-to-be could invent a way to kill them all without damaging the environment. Surely the world would be a better place without them, and surely the birds and bats that eat them could find other bugs to eat. There's lot of other bugs I don't hate with a passion like I hate mosquitos. Let the birds eat them instead. Do mosquitos really taste that good to bats? In fact, I think I'd rather risk losing a couple species of birds if there was a possibility of getting rid of all mosquitos. I'd buy a bird feeder. I'd do anything.


©1987 by Harvey Reid

Harvey Reid has been a full-time acoustic guitar player, songwriter, traditional musician, and free-lance minstrel since 1974. He has recently released his 11th solo recording on Woodpecker Records. He lives in Southern Maine.


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This web site concerns the music and life of acoustic musician & music educator Harvey Reid.

If you don't find what you want, or if you have comments or questions, please email to

 

WOODPECKER MULTIMEDIA
PO Box 815 York Maine 03909  USA
phone (207) 363-1886


Lyrics About Harvey Reid
Concert Schedule Lyrics
Catalog of Recordings Buy From Us
Say Hello to Us Booking Information
Books The Song Train
Newest Recording About Joyce Andersen
Newsletter About the Partial Capo
Listen to Audio Lyrics
Hot News Listen to Audio
Guitar Tunings Interviews
Articles & Essays Reviews
Publicity Info Out of Print Music
Publicity Photos Lyrics
Downloads Listen to Audio
Say Hello to Us Favorite CD's
Harvey's Gear  

Harvey Reid Concert Schedule |Harvey's Blog | About the Liberty Guitar Method|Catalog of CD's and Tapes|Discography|About this Web Site & What's New Here | Hot News | Woodpecker Home Page | About Harvey Reid |The Song Train | Video | Audio | About Joyce Andersen | Books by Harvey Reid | Get On the Mailing List... | Concert & Record Reviews | Interviews with HR | Lyrics to Harvey Reid Songs | Harvey Reid Annual Newsletters | HR's Guitar Tunings | About the Partial Capo | Articles & Essays by HR | HR's Gear | HR's Favorite CD's | HR's Career History | Booking Info | Publicity Info & Download Files |


This web site concerns the music and life of acoustic musician & music educator Harvey Reid.

If you don't find what you want, or if you have comments or questions, please email to