I am the woman who saves spiders from my daughter’s sound barrier breaking screeches. I am the woman who distracts my husband long enough so that he cannot stomp on the lizard in the shower. I am the woman who grabbed a live rat snake at the back of his head, walked him to our back door, and flung him into the back yard – probably bruising only his ego.
I am the woman who becomes a boneless lump on the floor whenever I spot a cockroach.
I do not know why I am so completely unnerved by only these creatures, but they are definitely my Kryptonite. (Except for hissing cockroaches in the Science Lab next door to my classroom. For some reason, those do not overly concern me. Probably because they are in containers…)
But 6 foot long cockroaches that hide in my moving boxes in my brand new (to me) classroom, and leap into my face when I lift up a book, and are obviously planted by terrorists with the intention of dismantling the United States’ educational system one terrified teacher at a time, have a hard time getting on my good side.
I do not like squishing cockroaches. This is not out of any kind of concern for their well-being; it is because the last time I tried to squish one, it refused to die. My fear of live cockroaches is only rivaled by my fear of live cockroaches that will not die – reminding me that when I die they will crawl in my ear and have babies for the rest of eternity.
So, I did what I considered to be a very well-thought-out maneuver. I grabbed the box with the leaping cockroach, and ran outside my classroom so I could fling it. Away. From. My. Ears.
My classroom is in a portable building. For security reasons, we must keep our doors locked at all times.
As soon as I ran out of the room, the door slammed behind me. Locking me out.
I set down the box. The cockroach flung himself to freedom.
Toward the hole in the bottom corner of my door.
The cockroach was in and I was out.
I weighed the benefits of quitting my job and walking away from the classroom forever or walking to the office to get someone to let me back into my room. Say my room is Texas. The office would be Mars. That’s how far the office is from my classroom.
I knocked on the door to see if the cockroach would let me back in.
Apparently, he does not welcome unsavory characters like me in his living space.
I sighed, and walked down to the office. I did not tell them that a cockroach locked me out. But I made certain the burly custodian entered my classroom first.
She did not seem too worried about terroristic cockroaches.
She showed me how to keep my door unlocked so I could avoid the re-occurence of absentmindedly walking outside and allowing the door to slam irrevocably shut. Even though I can’t keep it unlocked because it’s against the rules. Another moral dilemma that I get to debate in my head.
Then she left.
I think that, if we sell the car, cancel our cable, and stop eating, I could probably afford to stay home.
Or, I can just walk around with cotton in my ears.
It’s a tough call.