Did you know fruit flies can spawn from and survive on the soil of a house plant? Did you know that they can then spread to other house plants? Did you know that house plants can also be office plants–and that the same laws of pest-infestation apply? Did you know that when left untreated, fruit flies will spawn an ever-growing extended family whose sole purpose in their very short but wretched lives is to send me over the edge by attempting to enter my brain through any and all available facial cavities, nose, eyes and mouth included?
So here’s me everyday for the last six weeks, playing whack-a-mole with the flies that treat the space between my face and my computer screen like their own personal jungle gym. They’re not terribly difficult to catch (yet another quality besides their abbreviated life spans that brings their entire existence into question), and yet one is forced to apply just one of two methods to effectively murdering them, each of which presents its own problems.
Method 1: Swat or slap. As in, “See fly on desk. Bring arm down in sweeping motion. Squish fly against hard surface”. This method is really only effective when they fly lands on the cleared desk, and not on mouse, keyboard, coffee mug, etc. Since this only happens about 20% of the time, one must consider Method 2.
Method 2: Attempt to smash offender in the air. Due to the aforementioned dopiness, this approach can be very effective. The difficulty arises when the fruit fly figures out it is being pursued and its single Darwinian mechanism kicks in, causing the fly to seek shelter near the body of its attacker. This leaves the attacker with two unfortunate options: first, to slap herself in an attempt to slap the fly. Or second, to continue to try to “clap” the fly in the air, but very near the body, we’re talking symbol-smashing motions just inches from the neck and face.
It is this second unfortunate option I find myself involved in on a daily basis. The reason this is noteworthy is because everything I have to say is noteworthy. But also because it looks completely and utterly moronic and always calls to mind this little gem: