Robert Kirby is on vacation. This is a reprint of an earlier column.
This is a major bug alert. On Saturday, under the swing set in our backyard, was an insect megalopolis. I found it while trying to get out of cleaning the garage.
Under the swing set is the only part of our backyard where a guy can take a nap without being seen from the kitchen window. Settling down among the bark chips, I suddenly noticed why the swing set leaned heavily to one side.
Above my head was an enormous structure covered with yellow and black bugs. I was close enough to hear two of them talking about stinging my eyeball. I had blundered into a wasp Pentagon.
The situation called for a cool head. I finally located mine several blocks away, wrapped in a T-shirt and out of breath from hollering and self-defensive slapping.
That was close. Come to think of it, those may not have been wasps. They could have been hornets. I was moving too fast to tell for sure.
Fortunately, I have studied both. Hornets and wasps spawn annually from Mexico or possibly Halliburton. Arriving in Utah in the spring, they take out building permits and reproduce like religious fundamentalists.
All the average person needs to know is that wasps and hornets have pointy ends and aren't afraid to use them. On the bright side, they're way more reasonable than Rosie O'Donnell.
With reason in mind, I went back and cleaned out the garage. I had to do that in order to find my Hornet Negotiation Kit. I found it under the Neighbor Dog Defense Kit, which is missing its catapult.
I put the hornet kit together a couple of years ago after I was stung trying to get a nest out of my tool shed. The process, which the neighbors later told the fire department resembled a one-man riot, got rid of a large part of the shed as well.
I found the Hornet Negotiation Kit. You should really consider putting one together for yourself. Wasps go somewhere else after they sting me.
A good one consists of three large cans of bug spray, rubber gloves, ball peen hammer, plastic garbage bags, machete, firecrackers, welder's mask, bottle of rum, Band-Aids, plane ticket, tube of antibiotic cream, handgun and a propane torch.
Incidentally, the rum is NOT an optional item. You'll need it if the handgun and plane ticket don't work.
Sure, I was scared. But I have to protect my family even when they don't need or want me to.
I was in the garage suiting up for battle when my 4-year-old grandson walked in with the nest. He had knocked it down with a rock and jumped on it until the hornets were dead.