Moving Night for the Bees

I wouldn’t trust a neighbor that moves in the middle of the night. You would probably wonder if they’re in witness protection or expect to see them digging holes in their backyard at all hours. Buts that’s the way it is with bees. Bees are always obediently home at curfew or they face having their head bit off by the queen. So the only time to move them is at night. If you moved them during the day, you would have bees landing at the place where their home used to be, forming a homeless club of Clockwork Orange orphans up to no good in the neighborhood, stinging old women and puppies.

So I showed up in the moving truck and shone the headlines in their front window. “Honk honk! It’s moving night!” I yelled and opened the boxes up to make sure they were ready. The bees stuck their stingers up in the air to let me know how happy they were to see me. “You didn’t even box anything up yet! Do you not know how annoying that is when your friends show up to help you move?”

Instead of pizza and beer I brought the bees some sugar cakes that I had made the night before. It was the quick and easy kind of cakes that don’t involve cooking, or effort. It turns out 1 cup of water is way too much for 5 lbs of sugar to get a good hard cake. I had made the cakes on paper plates, so of course they stuck to the plates and came off in clumps. At first was a little disappointed with the hastily made cakes, but when I saw the bees enjoying their new ski slopes, I was pleased to find that we had a new activity to bond over.The Slopes

This site suggested I screen the front hole and lock the bees in for about 72 hours. I brought along some drywall mesh tape, which failed miserably to stick to the hive, so I plugged the entrance with some sugar snow cake instead. I figured the bees could eat their way, the same way the release the queen. This is the same logic of an Escape Room with a big cheese burger blocking the door. The puzzle solvers would nearly starve for 3 days, and wonder if they still have jobs, until one guy finally suggests they start eating the cheese burger and in a few hours they are free!Food Door

I ratchet strapped the bee boxes and carefully loaded them into the truck like I was carrying cartoon nitroglycerin. In the mild cold the bees are very docile, but I can’t imagine the reaction if I dropped a bomb of 80,000 bees right next to myself. So, yeah, I wore my suit. After loading them up, I slowly drove the bees to their new home while they enjoyed the slopes at Beeckenridge. (ugh)

New HomeSuccess! I didn’t jar them to death in the move. If they survive the winter it will be sugar cakes for everyone!

Corn Starch Ants

I recently read that cornmeal can kill ants.  Ants think cornmeal is extremely tasty and finding it is a rare treat.  They bring it back to the nest by the truckload where it is enjoyed by all.  Unfortunately they can’t digest it and it makes them really bloated so they can’t escape the ant hole anymore to get real food.  Then they all die. It would be like you finding a large bag of Taco Bell on the sidewalk and bringing it in to the office for all of your coworkers to enjoy.  Sure you’re a temporary hero for bringing in food for the whole office, but productivity quickly drops from the digestion issues and food poisoning from the meat that was sitting in the sun.

Shortly after reading that article I found a colony of ants, precariously close to the house.  I went inside to see if I had cornmeal to try this trick, but I only had corn starch. “Corn is corn!” I said and brought the container of potential poison out to the ants.

I poured a thin line of corn starch in the obvious path of the ants between my house and their home.  Instantly I saw a traffic jam as the ants’ pheromone path was interrupted.  Also, the ants refused to cross over the mound to reach the other side, and began trying to find the long path around the white wall.  They wouldn’t eat the starch, but it certainly screwed up their routine.  When I saw they had connected the two sides I increased the length of the wall, forming the Great Wall of Corn Starch, indefinitely separating haploids from diploids and soldiers from their Queen.

Mildly satisfied with disrupting the colony’s production line, I went to go back inside to look for real poison when the curious neighbor kid came over to see what I was doing.  I explained to him how the pheromone trail worked because the ants can smell which way the food is (in my house).  “Neat!  I wanna smell it!”  He got down on his hands and knees to smell the trail.

“I wanna smell it too!” his brother jumped off of his big wheel and tried to smell the trail.

They both came up coughing, with white corn starch all over their faces.  “I don’t like ant smells!” said the older.  “It smells like burning!” said the younger.

Their mom came out of her garage and noticed her kids bothering me again.  “What are you guys doing over there?” she yelled.

“We’re smelling the ant lines that Dan showed us!” said the older kid, wiping his nose off and getting corn starch on his hands and shirt.

“It makes me feel funny!” the younger said, getting back on his big wheel, which he drove out into the street.

She looked horrified when she got a good look at their faces.  She started yelling at her kids to get away from my house.  That was good old fashioned parenting.  Her son screamed and ran wildly towards the house.  The younger kid was doing donuts in the street.  She walked closer to me and saw the Great Wall of Corn Starch.  I smiled proudly.

Then she started using cuss words at me, which was not very neighborly.  When she was done cussing, I told her that I was just experimenting when her kids came over and started asking questions.  I also told her how disappointed I was that her kids didn’t know about pheromone trails because I learned that when I was 6-year-old from Reading Rainbow.  She stared at me as if she had no idea what I was talking about, so I started to sing “Butterfly in the sky.”  I gestured for her to jump in when she recalled the words, “I can fly twice as high…”  Suddenly she punched me in the face.

That’s the last thing I remembered before waking up to a number of police cars and ambulances.  There was a lot of explaining to do.

Meth House

I don't dare go outside anymore

I don't dare go outside anymore

Over the last week, people have been looking at the house behind me.  It’s been foreclosed on for a few months and hasn’t moved yet.  I keep hoping that someone forgets to lock the back door so I can be a do-it-yourself-Realtor and show myself around.

After all, I want to see what made the white trash deadbeat guys, who used to live there, tick.  Before they were evicted, and they took the electric meter with them, I noticed some of their hobbies.  They included: not mowing the lawn, leaving their basset hound tied to a tree for hours, beating their dog, and also selling drugs.  I didn’t find out until they were gone that I once had a swat team in my backyard to do the raid.

It took a drunk Greg to tell me that they were also making drugs.  I thought it was your friendly neighborhood pot dealer house, but I guess it was also a meth house – literally in my backyard.  I’m kind of upset that the meth house never exploded like you hear about on TV.  They just don’t make meth houses like they used to…

If nobody else buys it...

Someday...

Despite the former drug house, I still live in a safe and nice neighborhood with lots of kids and a relatively stable housing market, but I think a meth house explosion would have made things a lot more exciting.

SATURDAY SATURDAY SATURDAY!  We are blowing the roof off housing costs!  RED HOT Deals in the subdivision!  We’ll sell you the whole house, but you’ll only get the foundation!!! SATURDAY SATURDAY SS-SS-SS-SATURDAY!

Maybe next time.

I hope somebody buys that house soon.  I told Allie that if nobody buys it before the end of the year, I am going to raze it, pour a helipad, and learn to fly a helicopter.

It would be a shame to have to make true on the promise.  I don’t think you’re allowed to put guns on private helicopters.

Sign Land

People in my neighborhood love to put signs out to remind me of things.  Sometimes they want to remind me of who is running for politics.  Sometimes they want to tell me where they go to church or send their kids to school (a great idea!).  Sometimes they like to provide public service suggestions to me.
Kids Cant Drive!

Kid's Can't Drive!

I noticed this sign when I was jogging.  It’s lucky I had not been driving because I had to get right up to it to figure out what they were trying to say. With so many colors, and a picture of a girl that I didn’t know if she lived in the neighborhood or not; I probably would have crashed my car into a kid trying to read it.

When I went up to the sign I tried to click on the “Learn more” button but it would not provide any more information and I ended up poking a hole into the other side.  Now it says “earn more”. I think the meaning is that you “earn more” points for each kid you hit with your car, but I don’t know because I have yet to score in this new game.

Ok, so all joking aside, I “understand” new sign campaign for “real”.  Kids like to throw darts at cars so you should watch out for kid-dart-mafias. I get it.  But I already knew that and didn’t need a sign to tell me.  I wish my neighbors would pick some more vital information to tell me about when they decide to hang a message between metal wires in the ground.

My start

Helping out the hood

If everyone starts to do this we will live in greater harmony, and by that virtue the housing foreclosure market will be saved!