Wednesday, August 31, 2005


Recently my roommate walked into the bathroom to find an enormous cockroach ("At least two inches, Sam!") in the bathroom sink. Upon seeing her, the cockroach skittered down the drain. Over the course of the past few days, we have both had cockroach sightings, all in the bathroom sink, and, (my poor roommate) once two cockroaches together. So we did what any smart tenant would, we put a shoe in the bathroom in case we found a chance to kill a roach, and we told our landlord. I will not go into my landlord's theories of why there were cockroaches here, (for fear that this blog will quickly devolve into an angry, cursing mess,) but she finally sent an exterminator today.

Which brings us to my morning. Imagine me, sitting on my bedroom floor, dangerously close to the bathroom door, packing for my trip home. The exterminator has just left after flushing some kind of roach poison through the pipes in the bathroom and kitchen. Suddenly, I see a cockroach flying across the floor. It had somehow not occurred to me that the cockroaches would try to make an escape!

I immediately freaked out in a way I did not know I was capable of. I called my roommate while I watched the cockroach running haywire across my room, under my desk, around computer wires, over books, under the bed, back across the floor. I have no idea what I said to my roommate, but she said, "Sam, hang up and get the pink shoe." Apparently, I am very good with direct instructions.

I am glad no one was there to see me jumping around and trying not to scream. But I finally collected myself enough to take action. It was just me, my pink shoe, and the cockroach, which was still running in crazy circles under my desk. At first I threw the shoe at it, just praying that I would make a direct hit without having to get too close to the thing. Then the strangest thing happened. Somewhere in its short life, this cockroach learned that if being attacked, it should play dead. It immediately flipped over on it's back and stopped moving completely! I paused for only a moment before picking up the shoe and smashing the roach. It realized it's mistake after the first hit, but it wasn't fast enough and three shoe-strikes later it was dead.

The total roach death count was four: three by pink Saucony sneaker (and the help of the infamous play-dead trick) and one by toilet bowl drowning. The sink exodus has finally ended, and maybe cockroaches in Astoria have heard the word not to play dead when being attacked by a shoe. I, at least, have learned that it will take me a long time to feel comfortable sitting on my floor again.

1 comment:

Me said...

FYI--You said, "There is a roach and it just ran under my desk." Because I was two miles away and the situation was dire, I knew you could rise to the occasion and kill the sucka.