We got an ant problem. The landscapers cleaned up all the beds outside and must have kicked up a colony. It started benign enough, one here, one there, but then they started crawling up the walls and in my beard and it wasn’t the ants that were as bad as the kids complaining about the ants, and acting disgusted, and I’d demonstrate with a paper towel it wasn’t so bad just smooshing them: they were big, black ants that looked intelligent and hard working, and after a time I stopped using the towels and just grabbed them with my fingers and popped them like grapes, like balloon animals in segments a clown would make, and Dawn called an exterminator and printed the instructions, which said we should remove all the dishes from our kitchen, evacuate the pets: In most cases, we start our treatments with a baiting program. We want the ants to be attracted to the bait, and take it back to the nest to share with the entire colony. This may seem like we are making things worse, but this side-effect is temporary and it actually means our treatment is working. And then I felt kind of bad about baiting and poisoning them, but they were on the toilet, on the kitchen island…making us feel unclean, making us feel more so when we cleaned out the cabinets under the kitchen sink and Dawn said, are those mouse droppings? Of course they weren’t, we have a cat. Beth had droppings like that on her side-deck she was worried about, feared she had rats, but the exterminator crushed the scat between his fingers and demonstrated it was bats instead, you could tell by the silvery material: insect wings. This is the realm of the exterminator and plumber, the doctor or dentist, the accounting auditor. Parts of us better left for the dark, unseen. Worse when you pull it out and study it under the light.