"The Muffled Cries For Help From a Daddy of Four Beautiful Little Girls"

Monday, August 4, 2008

Death By Yankee Candle

I don't profess to be wise in the ways of insect extermination.
Or safety.

Since I have the internet, I have access to all manner of dangerous knowledge that's out there. So when my wife asked me politely (12 times) to do something about the yellow jacket nest in the ground by the back steps, I headed straight to Google.com to figure out my plan of action.

Now, I have a history with yellow jackets from my childhood. These boogers live in some kind of colony underground, and you'll see them coming and going from a hole. Something about the yellow jackets' pheremones causes 10-year-old boys to want to stick marshmallows into those entrances, with little to no concern about what irate stinging insects will do once they come out of their OTHER entrances.

Sting the 10-year-old boy repeatedly in the face, that's what they do.

As stupidity would have it, I completely disregarded everything I read online because I didn't have the products the sites recommended. Certainly, other insecticides I DID have would work well enough, right?

About the only thing I acted on from my online reading was to make my move at dusk or later, as the yellow jackets will all be tucked in for the night most likely.

Unfortunately, the hole is completely in the dark of the shadow of the steps, so there was no way to see it well. Based on my previous experience, I was not going to attempt this without being able to see the swarm and thereby have at least 0.18 seconds for my miserable life to flash before my eyes.

Since the flashlights would've taken an extra minute to find and I am prone to laziness, I grabbed a Yankee Candle (McIntosh Apple, thank you) and a lighter from the kitchen. It not only cast the right amount of light on my target, it also provided me with a pleasant aroma to enjoy while I massacred my tormentors.

It also provided me with the flame necessary to accidentally light the aerosol insecticide spray I was using, creating a giant fireball which singed the hairs on my right arm and blinded me for a second.

I'm not completely stupid, I should have you know. About half a second before the explosion, the thought did cross my mind, "I think this may be a bad idea." But by then, it was too late.

So the answer to your question? I'm guessing the fireball also went down into the hole and did some damage. This morning, I didn't see a single yellow jacket coming out of the hole where usually there are dozens at a time. Just a single one coming in late from an all-night party that hovered for a couple seconds and flew away from that den of death.

Oh, the answer to your other question would be "apple and burnt flesh."


Amy Beth @ Ministry So Fabulous! said...


Valerie said...

That's the way to show those little buggers who's boss!!

Chris said...

Har! I have to admit, the title alone ("Death by Yankee Candle") triggered some vivid thoughts. I've smelled some pretty atrocious candles that could clearly result in rigor mortis.

Glad to hear you had a great camp; also glad you're back. I've read that HGTV entry too many times.


Jennifer Raack said...

Oh my, you had me laughing (yes, I'm cruel and I laugh at danger and singed eyebrows). I'm sure those bees had a conversation among them as they left, "Let's get out of here...that man is stinking crazy!"

I have to say, I am completely amazed that you actually knew the name of the scent of the candle!

Oh, and I'm glad you're ok.

rthling said...

So your arms match your head now?
What, I'm just askin'!

Big Doofus said...

Maybe you could come to our place and send one of those "Apple-fresh Death Fireballs" down the ant hole where the kitchen ants live.

MLW said...


javamamma said...

I'm so sorry my hubby and I laughed our butts off at your expense. Well, not tooooo sorry. ;)

Kritter Krit said...

YOU SHOW 'EM!! (Fist pump to the heavens.)

Crikies, you're hilarious.

Mr. E said...

This very funny story reminds me of some things I have done as well. Check out my "ghost story" on my blog.