Millipede Invasion Continued

Two evenings ago sitting at my desk, I felt a tickle on my right toe which is surprising because that toe has taken every opportunity it has had in forty-four years to demonstrate its target acquisition prowess and I can’t imagine functional nerve endings being present. The awe experienced in pondering the human body’s ability to repair itself lasted less than a millisecond because there was something moving on my freaking toe! Whoever suggested that fear is not a great motivator has obviously never imagined that a venomous Asian snake with a foot fetish has found its way into their room and lay in wait all day for them to settle down and revel in the glory of removing boots and wool socks after a day in the Korean mid-July heat. That motivation sent me skittering backwards at a ridiculous rate of speed that probably destroyed the bearings in my rollie chair’s wheels. I peered under the desk to find my old nemesis and said “So we begin anew” in as wise a sounding voice as one can muster when speaking to a centipede that probably doesn’t understand English. I squished it with a flip flop and didn’t give it a second thought since I’d assumed it was just one that had been sealed into the room after I’d put down the demon-bug repelling salt barriers.

I awoke at five A.M. the next morning to get ready for physical training. The room was still dark when I stepped out of bed to a wet crunch under my right heel which sent me into something like a flat out sprint on my toes. Why was I running? Because there are still several dozen insulted spiders loose in here somewhere. Why on my toes? I have no idea. A better question might be: Why does this keep happening to parts of my right foot? Maybe things find it and it isn’t such an expert finder of things.

The problem presented itself as I left to go to our morning formation. The salt barrier at the door proved just as fragile as any laid down by Sam or Dean Winchester in that a simple scuff of the foot can render them completely ineffective. Some overzealous Lieutenant (LT) had taken it upon himself to sweep and mop the hallways. He is not only overzealous, but also insensitive to others or holds their salt barriers in low regard since he swept mine up. I suppose it could be that he is in league with my mortal enemy.

Note to self: * find out which LTs practice voodoo around here.

Fortunately, answers to my plight have been trickling in from my Face Book news feed. This is where I inadvertently got the salt idea from in a roundabout sort of way. I just needed something a little more LT proof. My cousin apparently read somewhere that millipedes hate wood ash and seek moist earth in which to lay their eggs. I just naturally assumed that the Army would frown upon setting the building alight, so I opted to modify my cousin’s suggestion. I’m not an arsonist. Anymore.

So as it turns out, the military frowns upon lighting fires anywhere near its buildings. It’s probably because they don’t want the North Koreans to think we are so desperate that we have to resort to fire as an energy source. I’ll have to check. My efforts were not a total loss, however. I did manage to create a decent quantity of wood ash which I hurriedly collected while the MPs called off the fire trucks. Ok. That last sentence was not true. Sorry.

Anyway, I think it time we review what we know of millipede demons at this point. 1) They seek moisture. 1-a.) I am 90% moisture. 2) They seek moist soil in which to lay their eggs. 2-a.) I am 10% minerals. AKA: dirt or soil. 3). They hate wood ash. (Probably reminds them of hell).

One plus two equals we are ideal nesting material for pregnant millipedes. This realization became particularly disturbing as I shaved and saw what looked like an insect antenna protrude from my left nostril. (Not on the right side of the body! Yay!). Since I was unable to identify any discernible mammary glands on any of these little freaks, I had no way of knowing which were female. I don’t know how any of them are ever attracted to each other enough to mate. They literally all look the same. I also do not know the incubation period required of their eggs. As it turns out, the antenna was just some random grey hair that decided to uncurl itself overnight. This became painfully obvious as I pulled it out by the root which I am sure was at least very close to the left tear duct if not directly attached.

I digress. Back to millipede factoid number three: They hate wood ash because it reminds them of their terrible home life. I happen to have quite a bit of that! That said, the salt Maginot line was rebuilt safely out of LT reach on my side of the door, and I plan to cover myself from head to sadistic bait toe in a healthy layer of wood ash. Now what to do about these Quisling spiders…

 

 

 

Millipede Invasion

My barracks room and the entire first floor of this building has been invaded by herds of millipedes. I have the distinct feeling of being in some cheap movie about exorcisms in which the demon’s presence is accompanied by crawly things. This leggy legion is unenhancing my calm and my clean floors

An old friend suggested I should get a dehumidifier to ward of this mass of marauding millipedes as they are fond of moisture. However, I am often frugal and spent the day seeking discarded desiccant packets instead. At the end of the day I tossed my scavengings on the barracks floor in a triumphant manner, sure I’d come up with a masterful solution. Yes, they make an uncomfortable carpet. They are just slightly better than Lego’s, but make the same disturbing crunching sound as millipedes when trod upon without the added moisture of bug guts. It is still unsettling to wake up in a dark room and set foot on them and in sleep induced forgetfulness, jolt yourself into full wakefulness well before your alarm goes off thinking you just stepped into a writhing ball of mating bugs intent on sucking the very water out of your body. Better than coffee.

Still, I found myself running a little short on these dime baggies of silica granules and was only able to cover the space around the edges of my bed. I am something like 90% water, I think. If these legged tormentors are partial to moisture, I wanted to make sure they didn’t want to get intimate with me as I slept. I would need a better plan if I were to construct adequate defenses.

After physical training, I decided to import spiders to combat my new nemesis. But what spiders to pick? I settled on these little black ones based on the logic that if flamingos turn pink from eating shrimp, these spiders must be black from eating millipedes. They were woefully inadequate for the task at hand. They just slide around on the glossy floor like retarded crabs on ice. I suppose it could be that they are Korean spiders and simply do not grasp English well, if at all.

The solution presented itself to me yesterday and I didn’t even realize it until this morning. Outside the barracks there is a wooden box with “Salt for Ice” stenciled on it. I naturally thought this was a great trade. A bag of ice can cost up to what? Two bucks? A container of salt is just mere cents. Quite happy at my find, I ran back to my room and secured the unneeded little salt shaker that came with the needed pepper shaker. I went to make the trade only to find that the box was already filled with salt. So much for stumbling upon a well-kept secret. Then again it could have been a simple matter of the verbiage being lost in translation. Things are worded differently in Korea and they may well have intended it to read “Ice for Salt”. Which seems like a terrible trade to me, but who am I to judge?

Then it dawned on me. Salt is a desiccant as well! I could simply form a barrier to my living quarters like the guys on Supernatural do. I can form a line from one doorpost to the other and another on my window sill. Which leads me to a conclusion on the demonic nature of millipedes and confirms the fact that they are in this building pursuant to a nearby exorcism. Their interest in water makes perfect sense to me now as I am sure that any number of hell’s minions might appreciate water a great deal.

The millipede problem may be solved. Only time will tell. I now have a bevy of missing arachnids in my room who are probably angry at my expressions of mirth when initially watching them fail to gain traction on the floor. Moral of the story: Don’t laugh at foreigners who don’t walk well. They aren’t stupid and probably speak more of your language than you of theirs. Also, millipedes are just tiny Dybbuk.