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Friday, May 21, 2004

They're baaaaack

The bastards have returned. Those big, stupid, disgusting insects that fly straight into you and then drop to the ground, gesticulating wildly, are returning. This is apparently "Brood X", a huge re-awakening of cicadas which emerge from their underground lairs once every 17 years to fly around bumblingly for several days, mate, and die. Jacob Sullum reports on those who try to make this phenomenon attractive:

Bug Bane - Must we learn to love cicadas?
The New York Times informs us that 'the periodic nature of the cicadas, the way they come at about the span of a person's youth, makes them irresistible emotional mnemonics.' To support this claim, the paper quotes Robert J. Thompson, a professor of popular culture at Syracuse University, who says, 'Cicadas are the sound of summer, of the year when you were young...It's the closest thing to a time machine you can get outside science fiction.'

Bullshit! Cicadas are the sound of annoyance. I hear their buzz and a scowl crosses my face as I scan my immediate area for unguided missiles about to blunder into me. I watch where I place my feet, wary to avoid the crunch of these menaces underfoot.

Bah! To paraphrase Calvin speaking to Hobbes, nature is always trying to do something disgusting to you.


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