Dear Diary: Passive-Aggressive Entomologist at the Family BBQ

Dear Diary,

Today was the family BBQ. I spent all afternoon with a bunch of bug murdering, pretentious humans. My day was awful, Diary, just awful!

As soon as I arrived, I saw my Uncle squash a beetle. I stared him down. “What? What did I do?” he asks me. “There’s nothing but weevil in your heart, pure weevil” I respond. I know he didn’t get it. I just scoffed at him and walked away.

I had to stand in the food line and talk to Aunt Bertha. “Oh look a monarch butterfly she tells me.” “Well that’s weird,” I responded as I pointed to her son, “someone has brought their pet chimpanzee.” She was offended and confused, but I didn’t care. If she can’t tell the difference between a Monarch and a Viceroy, then why should I pretend to tell the difference between her tactless, obnoxious son and a chimp? That was a moral victory, Diary. A moral victory for all the Viceroy butterflies mistaken for Monarchs.

My mom picked up on the tension between me and my uncle. She wanted everyone to have a good time, so she tried to make pointless conversation with the two of us while eating. Without warning, she started screaming like a mad person. “There’s a bug on a shirt.” With the memory of that innocent beetle in mind, I stared at my Uncle  and said “but not on the bottom of my shoe, Mom, not on the bottom of my shoe.” My uncle sighed and walked away. I think he understands now, bugs are people too.

Having made progress with my Uncle, I was hopeful the rest of the BBQ would go well. I was wrong, Diary. Little Johnny was squirting ants with his water gun. I stared at his mother and shook my head in disapproval. She didn’t notice so I took it up a notch. I breathed deep, heavy sighs until she had to ask if something was wrong.  “Oh, I’m just wondering if young Bizarro Oskar Schindler will be ready to answer to Bralm?” She was speechless. I left her  fumbling for words she’d never find.

Mom and Dad approached me; they were worried.  Little Johnny’s mom was concerned the heat was getting to me. “It’s not the heat, it’s the anti-insect atmosphere” I told them.  Mom felt bad and asked if I was having a good time? I replied, “Good time? No, no, no, I’m having a frass-tastic time!” I walked away and let them soak that one in. They didn’t seem to get it, but the bugs understood. And that’s all that matters.

I wanted to end things on a happier note, so I spent the last hour chatting with my grandma. Diary, she’s the only one that understands me besides you. So what if she’s blind, partially death, senile, and thinks I’m an etymologists. She gets me.

Good night,  Diary!


Vanessa Cardui


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