>The Freds…Posted: April 29, 2011
>When Mack was about five, she and I lived in a little white house. I mean little. Tiny. Itty bitty. Living room, kitchen, one bedroom (Mack’s) and a bathroom that was added on at some point when plumbing was invented, seriously.
The house was originally a guest house, or maid’s quarters, or something along those lines. It was a total of 694 square feet, but it was a house. We had a yard. It was close to my parents, close to work, and most importantly, when I was a poor single Momma, it was cheap. I couldn’t hardly complain over $350 a month for rent. We made do.
The house was owned by my best friend’s grandmother, G. It was across the street from G’s house, and my friend’s mom lived right behind us. My friend’s business was across the street the other way, and I was always completely surrounded by her family. They are my little Italian family.
G is 93 years old, still lives at home, still comes out to baseball and softball games for all the kids, and just in general rocks. She is my other grandma. She has adopted my kids as her surrogate great-grandkids, and gets them special gifts for Easter, Halloween, and Christmas. Sends special cards to them, has sent care packages to Mack at Yellow State, she is one special lady.
Mack and I lived in the white house for about two and half years. She had just turned five, until we all moved in together with my husband.
The house itself was fine. However, we had some extra “friends” that we had to deal with.
They were the “Freds.”
They were named so I could get Mack to quit freaking out about them.
The Freds were Boxelder bugs. The white house was a Mecca for them, it was white, the west side of the house was open to the sun, it was stucco, and they sunbathed like they belonged on Real Housewives of Miami.
I tried everything to get rid of them. Insect killers, an exterminator, home remedies, everything under the sun. Nothing killed those little assholes. Nothing. So rather then kill them, I just learned to deal with them.
The cats had a jolly time with them. They loved leaping after them, and killing them. I’m sure they were full of all kinds of protein, I got to quit buying kitty snacks for quite a while.
There were times when my friends would come over for movies, wine and such, and they would get flicked at my friends for a Fred war.
Good thing Boxelder Bugs are harmless, because we wouldn’t have been living there long if they hadn’t been. I was able to deal with the Freds. Really.
When the two field mice made it into the house, that’s when I freaked clear the hell out.