How to Slay A Roach in Ten Simple Steps
When you are standing in your bathroom and see a roach scurrying from the dining area toward your bedroom, follow these steps.
Step 1: React. Totally flip out. If it is 6 am and you are applying your favorite mimosa-flavored lipgloss before leaving for work, it is helpful to fling the tube into the sink, yelp loudly, and stagger backwards until you hit a wall.
Step 2a: Attack, Phase 1. Grab a towel and throw it over the roach. Wait several seconds to see if it will emerge from under the towel. Run to the closet and get a pair of shoes. (Really, you only need one, but who’s going to grab only one shoe? They’re a set.) Back at the towel, toss one of the shoes aside when you can’t figure out what to do with it.
Step 2b: Attack, Phase 2. Lift the towel and slam the shoe onto the roach as it flees toward your bed. Wait several seconds to see if it will emerge from under the shoe this time. When it doesn’t, grind the shoe into the carpet with your toes. Recoil when you realize that your bare foot is touching something that is touching a roach. Recall that the other shoe is close by. This is what the second shoe is for! Use that to grind the roach.
Step 3: Disposal. Run to the kitchen and grab as many paper towels as your hand will hold. Run back to the bedroom. (Note: Get in shape ahead of time for the amount of room-to-room running you will do.) Lift the shoe and witness with disgust the roach still moving, but just barely, so it is safe to touch it with the paper towels. Because of the volume of paper towels, you barely feel the crunching of the skeleton as you grab and wrap it. Flush the whole package down the toilet. Then flush two more times: there are a lot of paper towels.
Step 4: Clean up. Get more paper towels, some wet, and wipe the roach guts from your carpet. Recall how irritated you were the other night when you spilled balsamic vinaigrette on the carpet and think, wistfully, about how you didn’t have to kill that before wiping it up.
Step 5: Assess. Even though you never call in sick to work unless you are truly sick, consider doing so to deal with this situation, which is obviously making you ill. Ultimately decide against it because the next step is …
Step 6: Inform Others and Seek Counsel. Email key contacts with the subject line “Alert!!! Roach Alert!!!” and a brief synopsis of the morning’s events. Yak to several co-workers. Ask everyone to provide an opinion. One person laughs and asks if you are sure it was a roach. Maybe it was a waterbug? Consider this possibility, but only briefly.
Step 7: Research. Take to the internet. Become dismayed when most sites offer solutions that are “gentle” and “natural” so as not to harm children and pets with chemical toxins. What is up with pansy babies and cats? Because you have neither, you think, Screw this! I’m going to nuke these things out of existence with corporate pesticides all the way!
Step 8: Gather Armament. After work, go to Walmart (!!), where you purchase a 12-pack of black box bait stations. You have a two-bedroom apartment, but you feel this is warranted. Note happily that the box reads SOURCE KILL MAX! You aren’t sure what this means, exactly, but it is in angry, scary, roach-killing letters. Also purchase a syringe of gel for squirting along doorways, just in case the twelve bait stations aren’t enough.
Step 9: Bargain. After you situate the bait and gel accordingly, think of some things that annoy you. (Think of only some things, as much annoys you and this could take a while.) Recall the weird smell from your kitchen sink that plagued you for a few days until it went away. Offer to the Universe or God or Whatever Controls This Stuff that you will endure the strange sink smell without complaint for, say, three weeks if there will be no more roach sightings, ever.
Step 10: Surveil. Walk around your apartment, surveying the perimeter. Occasionally flinch at the black boxes lurking in corners because you don’t have your glasses on and you keep mistaking them for roaches. Consider taking your pink pepper spray on the rounds, even though you bought it months ago to use on humans (and you still haven’t tested it yet – man, you are so lazy and forgetful!). Decide against it because if you actually did see a roach you are sure to …
Repeat Step 1.