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Housekeeping

The One With The Cicadas

So we had another power outage at work today. Nothing major, but just long enough for me to lose today's post. Which was about cicadas (or CICADAS!!! if you live in the thick of the panic). So I'm taking the power outage as a sign that maybe the world will survive without another goddamn post about the CICADAS!!!

Especially since my only original thought about the CICADAS!!! is that the CICADAS!!! are fucking stupid and as a species, totally deserve to die out. I was prepared for the annoyance and the can't-open-my-car-windows-cicadas-will-eat-me factor. But I certainly was not prepared for the carnage. After waiting for 17 years, they emerge with exactly three items on their to-do list. Crawl out of weird shell-thing, make a lot of noise and mate. And for hundreds upon hundreds of them, these three tasks are just way too complicated.

Half of them seem to crawl out of their shell-things only to end up upside down on the sidewalk where they flap and twitch and eventually get stepped on or just cooked in the sun. Squish. Another third of them decide that car tires are a nice place to perch or oh look, a car window or oh look, a goddamn wall. Squish, squish and squish. Another 37.34% of the ones that do manage to mate seem to find a way to get themselves killed during the act.

After noticing among the legions of CICADA!!! corpses littering the city's sidewalks, dozens of dead CICADAS!!! that are connected to each other by the butt region, Jason commented, "Why do they die like that? Is cicada sex really that exciting?"

No, it really isn't. But after witnessing the miracle of CICADA!!! fertilization, we realized what keeps happening. The bugs connect to each other by their hind ends. Then they zig and zag all over the damn place like an airplane with a cockpit and a drunken pilot at both ends. Eventually, the happy CICADA!!! couple slams into a nearby tree. Squish.

And about the only other useful purpose these stupid-ass bugs serve is the opportunity to link to stuff like this.

So what was I saying about the world not needing another goddamn CICADA!!! post?

Squish.

Comments

Morty's Buddy

**makes mental note to add "chocolate covered Cicadas" to Amy gift list**

Martha

I think I'm happy to be living in Arizona. No cicadas here. But we do have scorpions!

Chris

Its cicada madness I tell you! But honestly? I'd take cicadas over scorpions any day!

Zoot

Dude. I think you are ALL just making these things up - I think the entire NE is full of shit. Cicadas - whatever.

(just kidding. of course. Just thought I'd talk some Cicada Smack)

Amalah

For Lee, from the Washington Post:

Choco-Cicada Chunks

INGREDIENTS:

1 1/4 lb fine-quality bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened), chopped into small pieces
Vegetable oil for greasing pan
2/3 cup dried cranberries
2/3 cup raisins
1 cup dry-roasted cicadas (approximately 60)
1/4 cup nuts of choice (optional)

METHOD:

Prepare cicadas: From freezer, remove wings (if using newly emerged black females), legs and head. No, they don't come back to life upon thawing, much as I feared. What's left are the bodies, about the length of a thumbnail. Place bodies in a pot of boiling water, for 3 minutes or so, to remove any potential soil bacteria. Drain and place on a baking sheet and into a 225 oven. Roast for up to 20 minutes, until completely dry. They will be somewhat crispy. Taste one; they kind of taste like turnips.

Prepare an 8-inch square baking pan: Line bottom and sides with foil, leaving a 2-inch overhang, then lightly oil foil In top of a double boiler (or a metal bowl set over a saucepan of barely simering water), melt chocolate, stirring occasionally with a rubber spatula, until smooth. Remove chocolate from heat and stir in fruit, cicadas and nuts, then spread evenly in baking pan. Cover with foil, then freeze until firm (if in a hurry) or in fridge, for a few hours. Lift molded chocolate using overhand and transfer to a cutting board. Peel off foil and cut chocolate with a heavy knife. Store in airtight container in the fridge. Makes about 36 pieces.

(And for Zoot, evidence of a region gone mad: The Post's full cicada coverage.)

Dawnie

Oh my GAWD, y'all. Cicadas? Are GROSS. Seriously. Downtown where I work and the area around my apartment were thankfully spared, but today I had to drive over to Cicadaville to pick up my bridesmaid's dress? So so nasty. First of all, so so loud. And just TONS of them. Ew!

I was twitching all the way home. Ew ew ew ew ew. So glad they're not around my apartment, because I would seriously be in a mental institution by now.

Mir

I made the mistake of watching that video you linked to. Have been trying to bleach my brain ever since but so far stubborn cicada-eating images remain. *gag* Suddenly 9.5 months of snow every year seems so tame in comparison....

Zandria

I don't really understand why, though we're only an hour or two from each other, that Richmond hasn't witnessed this infestation. Granted, I am not complaining. Just stating a fact (or trying to make you jealous, possibly). :)

lizardek

Just reading about them makes my skin crawl. EW!

Fraulein N

Like Zandria, I have escaped the wrath of the CICADAS!!! Of course now, just because I said that, the walk to my car after work will be littered with squish.

Cathy

You guys have some weird ass cicadas, cause I live in Ontario (about an hour from Detroit, Michigan) and we have cicadas every year, not every 17 years, and not in huge masses, we barely even see them, you just hear them in the trees.

Kerry

I've also been a bit surprised over the mass of cicada coverage I've been seeing. I was around for the last 17 year batch, and I don't remember them being all that bad. Of course, I was 9 at the time, and cicadas completely freaked my mom out, so maybe it was just that I was having fun at her expense. Man I was a rotten child.

your adoring handmaiden

*munching* great recipe Amalah! I added a little bit of dried coconut. YUM.

Nicole

How can people eat those things. The teens in my neighborhood collected a bunch of the cicadas and prepared a whole meal out of them. DISGUSTING!!! And, my personal opinion is that, if they are going to die, they should have the common decency to do it in the grass. Where I won't hear them crunch. Ick!!

phil

Can anyone give me information on Cicadas in Arizona? I am from San Diego (living in Arizona for the summer), and we don't have Cicadas. My research has shown that they appear to come out only once every 17 years in certain parts of the country. Here, however, i think they are yearly. I know they aren't dangerous, but I am still afraid of them. Any info would help, please email me at wopphil@aol.com

Thanks!

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