Friday, April 4, 2008

Dyson vs. wasp

I have a method for dealing with stinging insects with a Dyson vacuum cleaner. I use the extensible wand and by the time it's near enough to the bug, it's too late for it to escape.

I applied this method to a paper wasp I found inside the storm door to my porch. While I believe in beneficial insects and nature and all that stuff, paper wasps are just to aggressive to allow a foothold near my guests. Heeding the advice of the Tao Teh Ching, to uproot things before they become big problems, I set out to nip this in the bud.

I suppose I should have been warned when the thing held its ground as the great wand of suction approached. Finally, at the last possible minute before I was actually poking a bee with a stick, the legendary filterless vacuum scooped up the hapless wasp and I felt a click as it bounced its way down the hose into the canister. Ah, the canister.

The transparent canister that lets you see what you've sucked up. I am very thankful for this feature. To my surprize, the thing has survived the 90g's or whatever force in those famous vortices within and is groggily stumbling to its feet. Usually this ordeal kills roaches or whatever bugs go in. Not this guy.

There is a fair amount of vacuuming debris already inside, so I can't just dump it out and step on it. I am afraid of it climbing out the opening in the top, so I replace the canister, and start vacuuming.

I vacuum my floor, in the hope the extra wind will slay the beast. After a few minutes, I look. I finally see a wasp, except instead of red and black it is a dirty gray from all the dust. It is walking, better than it was before. Not good.

I can't dump the cargo w/out making a huge mess, and I am afraid of clogging up the toilet with it, so I put the canister in my freezer in its entirety. I don't think it will kill it. It will probably just slow it down. There is an opening in the canister and it will probably crawl out to hide behind the ice cream, then fly out and sting me in the face when I open the door and the warm air revives it.

I figure I have to keep the door shut at least 24 hours to let it freeze. I can't have ice for my tea. The wasp is winning this one. I have a wasp in my freezer. I have a vacuum in my freezer. I'm an idiot.


Red Icculus said...

That story was epic. I hope you win. Slay the beast!

fridrix said...

I got tired of the suspense so I retrieved the vacuum cleaner canister from the freezer after a couple of hours. There were ice crystals inside. I listened for wasp noises and, hearing none, emptied the two cups of vacuum debris and possibly a wasp into a couple of grocery store trash bags, tying them securely shut. Whereupon I trod carefully upon them, smushing the contents inside while avoiding the tearing of the billowing double bagged sack. I stuffed the sacks into an empty plastic fruit salad container and deposited the securely bound parcel and hopefully dead wasp in the trash. I think I got it; I don't know. I didn't see a body. It might still be behind the ice cream.

melanie said...

I love the story! It's like a cross between my daily battles against box elder bugs and my brother's tendency to euthanize his goldfish in the freezer (they are too huge to flush). Beauty!

Camilla said...

This is hilarious. I work for Dyson and this really is one of the funniest stories I have heard!!