Sunday, July 20, 2008

Gomushin Girl's Apartment

Vacation is a lovely thing. You pack, you go visit a far away place (this time, my stateside hometown) and when you come back you're theoretically refreshed and ready to face the demands of real life and blogging again.
Unless, of course, while you were gone the entire roach population of Korea decided to shack up at your place.
I got back the other night to find that while I had won the battle, the Great Roach War was still underway. The 장마 had once again made mi casa their casa, and they weren't going to give up their new real estate without a fight. The final death toll isn't in yet, but it's likely to be high. Unwilling to let it drag on, I took the moral low ground and launched my bio-weapons. Chemical warfare ensued. I am guilty of genocide, and I don't feel bad about it at all.
The downside is that getting happy with the roach spray has turned my apartment into a chemical death zone. I'm not sure any creature, myself included, can live long in this toxic environment. I sprayed just about every nook and cranny in the place. I'm going to have to do about four loads of laundry to detox my luggage - unfortunately one of the bastards decided to use my not-yet-unpacked suitcase for cover, but he underestimated my own ruthless nature.
A possibly innocent victim in all of this was the strange, cricket-like creature huddling in terror behind my washer, but he looked like the enemy from afar. Collateral damage happens in these sad times. Besides, I'm not too fond of crickets, either.*
I'm still mulling the gecko solution, but it'll be a few days before my apartment is anywhere near habitable by carbon-based life forms again.
I feel bad. I had so wanted to come back from vacation with some wonderful and intellectual posting about social issues and politics and art and everything. I mean, The Grand Narrative put me on his blogroll, and I feel like I need to do something to be worthy of that. But no, my poor jet-lagged mind is stuck on germ warfare against insects.

*This other notable exception to my generally accepting attitude towards the creepy-crawlies of the animal kingdom stems from an unfortunate incident during my childhood. I had a pet skink that needed to be fed live crickets. I bought about 100 crickets at a time and kept them in a small wire cage. Since the cage was small, it was easier to bring the crickets to the skink and dump a few directly into the aquarium than try to fish one out. Unfortunately, one night I wasn't very careful, and sat the flimsy wire cage on the edge of my desk. Of course I then bumped the desk and sent the cage crashing to the floor, springing the cage door open and releasing a hundred freshly bought crickets into the freedom of my bedroom. You don't know torture until you've tried to scramble around scooping up live crickets out of shag carpet. I never did catch them all, and there was chirping in my room for weeks after.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Oh, I may choose the Economist magazine as some "light" reading before I go to bed, but even though I don't actually have any hair I still like to let it down so to speak. Loved the story about the snake and the crickets.

Just keep doing what you're doing: people will link to you if they like what you write. But there's not many of us Asia-Studies geeks out there really, so I'm really curious about what you're researching exactly. For my sake, please write a little more about that sometime.