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Friday, December 19, 2014

Australian Horror Story

I heard girlish screams coming from the lounge room last night. I dropped the spoon on the kitchen bench and ran in to see what was going on.

Scotto stood in the middle of the room manically flailing a TV guide around in the air.

“What is it, Scotto?” I yelled in panic. “What’s the matter?”

“A cockroach just flew in the window,” he shrieked Nathan Lane style, swatting the air with Rove McManus.

“Is that all?” I sighed and turned to go back to my cooking. “You don’t need to worry about the cockroaches that fly! They’re just German Cockroaches. They don’t hurt you.”

“That sounds like bollocks to me,” he replied, staring around the room nervously, waiting for the Red Baron to appear out of nowhere and engage in mortal aerial combat. “What’s the difference between German cockroaches and ordinary cockroaches? It looked exactly the same as all the others to me. That cockroach didn’t look particularly German to me.”

“Well Scotto,” I pontificated. “My Grandma used to tell me the ones that fly are hygienic German cockroaches so… ,” I began to falter when I looked more closely at the oily, brown insect crawling up the lounge room wall. It did look EXACTLY like a normal cockroach; it wasn’t even performing the Sieg Heil and goosestepping around the skirting boards or anything.

Maybe it was just pretending to be a German cockroach?

Maybe my dear old Grandma had been telling me porkies?

Like the time she told me that Toe-biters don’t really bite your toes and then I was bitten on the toe by one during an episode of Matlock Police and screamed her house down until ice was applied.

My Grandma had no flyscreens on her old fibro house and on nights she babysat us a multitude of insects would scurry in and out while we watched Cop Shop or Homicide on the telly.

Not to mention the swarms of mosquitoes flying in, attracted by the lights and ignoring the pongy mosquito coils on saucers which would inevitably be tripped over by one of us kids. It’s all fun and games until someone acquires a second degree burn on an ankle.

No one really talked about Dengue Fever or Ross River Fever back then, even though we all lived on the actual ‘Ross Fudging River’. I can throw a stone from my bedroom window and it will land in Ross River we’re that close to it.

Well it would if I didn’t throw like a girl (Scotto’s words not mine).

I don’t think those particular fevers had been invented back in the sixties. A mosquito bite was just a mosquito bite then not a debilitating disease. Either that or the rheumatic inflammation was dismissed as ‘growing pains’… who knows.

Anyway, I was concerned about my Grandma’s possible deception (and post war racism) so I looked it up on Google. Apparently there ARE German cockroaches (in Germany they're called Russian cockroaches which is funny) and also Asian cockroaches in Australian households.

German cockroaches don’t fly and the Asian ones do.

NB: Have you ever seen an Australian freakin cockroach? I saw one as we were leaving a fete late one night.

“Has someone lost their little dog?” asked a plaintive ten year old Jonah pointing at what at first appeared to be a Yorkshire Terrier. I glanced over and almost fainted at the sight of the behemoth. Thank God they don’t infiltrate houses and just stick to leaf litter is all I’m sayin’.

Although why a cockroach is cleaner if it can fly has now begun to raise a few questions, Grandma.

Surely a flying cockroach is capable of traversing much more immoral and offensive areas (such as sewers, mortuaries and teenager’s rubbish bins containing maggoty leftover quarter pounders) than a non-flying cockroach (which is relegated to lowly kitchen cupboards and toothbrushes on the bathroom sink) and indeed, should be even more alarming.

Lulu, my 18 year old daughter, was asked to do the washing up the other night. Imagine my jaded disappointment when I walked downstairs to find the sink still overloaded with greasy dishes the next morning.

“I couldn’t do it, mother!” she exclaimed in disgust. “I came down here late at night and there was a huge cockroach sitting on the kitchen counter staring at me. Why don’t you get the pest exterminators in? This place is filthy!”

“Well that’s because he smelled all the leftovers on the plates you were supposed to clean up before we went to bed!” I said. “And besides, I like to deal with things on a more personal level. I don’t like exterminators.”

I’ve never liked the idea of a guy dressed like he’s reading radio-active levels at Chernobyl, spraying stuff around the house while I’m inside mask less, drinking my tea.

That's why I like to use spray and baits. I put the dog’s dishes away and spritz my pest control products around the areas I know the Sergeant Schultz, and Hong Kong Phooey cockies are likely to congregate in: the corners, the skirting boards, the doorways and my rubbish bin under the kitchen sink.

As for the mozzies; well, there’s nothing like the scent of mosquito repellent in the air to make it feel like it really is Summer.

This is a sponsored post and I am delighted to offer you the chance to win a package of Mortein products to keep cockroaches and mosquitoes (of any nationality) away from your home.

All you need to do is leave a comment in the comments section on the blog and I'll put your name in a draw!

The winner will be announced on Christmas Day!

Linking up with Grace at With Some Grace for #FYBF