Ramblings from the Desert

The man who trades freedom for security does not deserve nor will he ever receive either. ~Benjamin Franklin

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Location: New Mexico

Author of the urban fantasy novel, The Music of Chaos, and the paranormal romance, The Canvas Thief.

Friday, October 01, 2010

The Panty Pest

I've got him in my sights, corrosive revolver loaded and ready to fire. "The only good Crimson Lance soldier is a dead one," I mutter. My finger twitches on the XBox controller.

And then my view is obstructed. By a moth. A smallish moth, who nonetheless, chose now as the perfect time to land on the television screen.

"Ugh. Stupid, stupid panty pest," I say, with impotent rage. Squishing the moth is out of the question, since the little shit will then be smeared over the screen. So I wait until the Lance soldier moves out from under the bug, before unleashing caustic hell. (Side note: Borderland's baddies, when shot with caustic and incendiary weapons, melt, dying in a theatrical display of screaming and hand waving. It doth amuse.)

"Panty pest" is code for "flour moth" in our household. You know, those nasty moths and their worms, that feed on foodstuff flour, cookies, etc.? At Casa de Kirby, their prime habitat is birdseed, which is stored in the garage. But periodically, there is a huge population explosion, and some get in the house.

The solution is a little paper trap, loaded with pheromones. The moths, thinking they are about to meet the love of their lives, fly into the trap and are stuck on the sticky sides. The end result, moths embedded in tar-like goo, twitching pitifully, is perversely satisfying.

Once, a few years ago, I scribbled "pantry pest traps" on on the dry erase board in the kitchen.

Soon after, we had company and someone, my sister-in-law maybe, noticed, rather gleefully, that what I had written was: "PANTY PEST TRAPS."

This, of course, set off a lively discussion as to the nature of a panty pest, and whether this was actually a reference to my husband.

To this day, flour moths are synonymous with "panty pests."

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