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Okay, by now you know how much I love my garden. So you won’t be surprised that I went into sleuth mode when I realized that something was ruining my early tomatoes. Something sinister. It was drilling holes in them just as they were perfectly ripe for the picking. And that hole rendered what was left of those beautiful red things bitter and disgusting. I found myself picking those tomatoes when they were orange and ripening them elsewhere. That would not do. I put a lot of work into that garden and I had every right to ripen my tomatoes on the vine. I know my rights! No, this would not do at all.
I had to know.
I had to know what disgusting, immoral creature without conscience was ruining my tomatoes. And I had to know before the rest of the the tomatoes in rotation started to turn red. So I did what any borderline insane normal person would do. With my dog in tow, I went out there late at night with my fashionable paranoia emergency light to monitor the activity. I actually got at least a little kick out of the fact that I had an opportunity to use this contraption when my life wasn’t in danger. It’s one of those combo radio, fluorescent, flood and emergency flasher-type lights, both red and green. Complete with a siren. It runs on four thousand D batteries. I bought the thing when I realized that one day soon, either the Jihadists or cyber- people eyeing our electric grids were eventually going to reach us, since nobody in government seems in the least bit concerned about who enters this country or what they do when they get here, and they are pretty much computer ignorant in DC. In other words, hackers seem to break into our government computers almost weekly. So, I regarded this as a practice in the use of my emergency light, which is a good thing, because I immediately flipped the wrong switch and turned on the siren. Believe me, from now on, I will know where the siren button is.
I shined the light directly on the plants and moved it slowly over every inch of those potentially succulent fruits and their leaves. And there he was. A slug. A disgusting, revolting, slimy slug, on top of the one tomato on that plant that would be ready for picking in the morning. He was shamelessly sucking a hole in it right before my eyes, the little bastard! And he brought two friends with him, sitting on the nearby leaves waiting for their turn!
I went wild.
My eyes flashed red in the dark I am sure.
I could feel the veins in my neck pulsating.
I began to curse and my curses echoed across the quiet land. My dog, who was sitting there patiently wondering how it is she got stuck with such a nutbag for a Person, stood up and barked. Mom was mad, surely there is something Wrong. By this time, I heard my neighbor behind me come out of his home with his dog. I heard his dog barking, which sparked my dog to start barking loud enough to shatter glass. Then across the way, yet another dog started barking. They were all barking and I was moving mylight across my entire garden, covering every inch, looking for yet more of these vile, revolting creatures that are only second to the flea in their ability to disgust me.
I had spent what I thought was too much money in May on some stuff called SLUGGO. I wanted to head off the slugs at the pass. Other than getting a couple of dozen ducks, I knew of no other way to do it than to buy SLUGGO. The slug killer comes in two pound jugs and the little pellets inside are both appetizing and deadly to slugs. The pellets, however, are harmless to pets, humans and plants. They contain iron, which is deadly to slugs but not bad stuff for your garden. This was very important to me, especially since every cat for miles around that is out loose generally stops by to visit me. I plant catnip for them and they enjoy taunting my dog, who loves cats. Knowing that the stuff is harmless to all living things except disgusting slugs held a real appeal to me. Apparently the slugs eat them and it renders them unable to eat again. Then they wander off to their den and die of anorexia or some such thing–hidden away where you don’t have to look at the revolting things. Then, I imagine, the remaining slugs in the den hold a mass slug funeral or something. Whatever.
I must say that the SLUGGO worked. I was pretty much slugless. The problem is I didn’t anticipate that maybe I didn’t kill them ALL. Obviously, I missed at least two of them. And so the little beasts did what they had plenty of time to do in between eating gardens: they multiplied.
I donned a rubber glove and grabbed the three slugs I found — and threw them on the ground. A tomato fell off the plant and now I was REALLY swearing. By now my dog was totally perplexed and she kept looking down at the ground and then up at me, then down at the ground and up at me. Then I went to the garage and grabbed a garden shovel and the remaining SLUGGO granules I still had.
First, I beat the crap out of those three slugs with the shovel and then I began to place a ring of SLUGGO granules around the plants. I just KNEW there were hundreds more of these little balls of slime all around me. I could feel them watching me, talking to each other in Slug language about how they can’t wait to reach the rest of my tomatoes and suck holes in them.
This was the point at which things got a lot brighter than they were by the light of my emergency light contraption. Two police cruisers pulled up. One car faced my land and flashed a prowl spotlight around the property. Two cops got out of the other car and headed my way, holding flashlights and unsnapping their gun holsters. I downed my dog, who by now thought we were under siege and then I froze and thought Jaysus, I am going to get shot by the cops over my tomatoes! I could almost hear the hundreds of hiding slugs laughing.
I said aloud as they moved closer, “This is my house guys! I’m just killing slugs!“.
By the time they were close enough to see their faces, I could see they were both laughing. They told me a neighbor called them and thought somebody was out here robbing or killing somebody or something. I explained about the slugs and one of them said he was going to arrest me for molesting slugs. The other cop asked me if I had any beer and I said, “Why, do you want one?“. So he said, no, people use beer to kill slugs. And I said, Yes I know but I couldn’t resist asking. Then he went on about how his wife does this beer thing and buries jars in the ground full of beer to catch drunken slugs.
Anyways, as they left to make out their slug report or whatever, they kind of asked if I could finish this job by daylight and wrap up the emergency light thing. So I obliged, but not before throwing more Sluggo around the plants and hitting those three slugs with the shovel one more time to make sure I finished the job. I actually yelled “Take That, you bastards!“.
In the morning I went to a nearby convenience store and, while everybody else was buying coffee, I asked the guy behind the counter which was the cheapest beer they had.
The guy looked at me like Geeze, the woman obviously will drink anything at 8AM. So I bought some Busch beer and went out to the garden with a bunch of little containers and buried them close to the plants. I filled the little containers with beer, which was stupid, because slugs don’t hang out in gardens in the sunlight. Besides that, by ten o’clock it was raining so hard here that I thought I might need an Ark–thus watering down and wasting perfectly bad cheap beer. That was the bad news. The worse news was, the rain and missing sun brought out an army of slugs, all heading for my tomatoes. So I put on a hoodie and went out there and scooped up a boatload of them with an old slotted spoon and threw them into a bucket of water. At first, I just gleefully watched them drown, but as their numbers grew and I could see where their dens were by their paths, I became much more insane and scurried around the land scooping the scheevy little bastards up and throwing them into the bucket. Some of them actually tried to escape, so I whacked them back into the water. By the time I was soaked to my own gills, I had executed more than 50 slugs and more were heading my way. I grabbed the orange tomatoes that looked ready to redden off the plants and went inside. I also left the bucket of dead slugs near the garden to serve as an example to the other slugs. When I was dry again, I went back out and executed some more.
A dry spell is predicted for the next few days. So tonight, it’s Miller Time for slugs. Now that I know their den areas, I will leave some beer for them there as well, inviting the slimy SOBs to an opportunity to whet their whistles on their trip to my garden. I’m not worried about stray cats because I know enough about cats to know that no self-respecting cat would drink cheap beer.
I will do the beer run just before dark so that the Police Slug Swat Team doesn’t have to show up again. However, if I make a wrong move or find myself unable to resist beating on some slugs, this could easily be my second offense. So if you don’t hear from me tomorrow, know that I have been arrested for serving alcohol to under-age slugs or some such shit.
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