Sunday, June 26, 2011

First Pet Bug

A few weeks ago, we were at Target. Flik wanted a bug-catching set. It had a little "bug hotel" that was all mesh with a plastic door. It had little tweezers for picking up the bugs. (Seemed unnecessary.) And it had a little magnifying glass for getting a better look at the bugs. It was cute and cheap and Flik is a little boy, so we threw it in the cart.

A week later, Flik and Daddy are in the garage and driveway doing garage and driveway sorts of things. (I'm not really sure what, I tend to do "indoor" things while they're out there.) I go out to talk to Daddy, and Flik is giddy over the bug he caught in his new bug trap. I can tell from the look on Daddy's face that the bug in question is not going to be a Mommy favorite, but that's ok. I've got two boys and I know I'm going to have to be tolerant of the many-legged creatures that will be a part of my life for a while.

Flik is standing in the driveway and holding his bug hotel. From where I am standing, it looks completely empty. No leaves or twigs have yet been inserted to create a "habitat". Flik, practically bouncing with excitement, brings the bug hotel to me.

"Look, Mommy! I caught my first bug!"

He is beaming. I look through the mesh. Before I see the bug, Flik announces with glee, "It's a mosquito!"

I can't stop giggling. Both at his pure excitement and the hilarity of catching a mosquito.

"Daddy said I can keep it as a pet!"

He is still delighted, but is looking at me as though he senses that I may veto Daddy's decision.

"Sure, you can keep it. But you're not bringing it into the house. It's staying in the garage."

I look at Daddy. "How did he catch a mosquito?" Daddy informs me that Flik left the door to the bug hotel open and was delighted to find that a mosquito had wandered in on its own.

"We need to feed it," Flik chimes in.

"Well, you're on your own, kid. Because I am not feeding the mosquito."

"Why not?"

"Because mosquitoes eat blood. You need to let it bite you if you want to feed it. And do you want the mosquito to bite you?"

I am questioning this tack, as I also do not want my kid volunteering his arm to the mosquito. I'm hoping he is with me on this. He thinks it over.

"No, Mommy. We can just give it bug food."

"Sorry, kiddo. But bug food, for that bug, is you. And I'd prefer it if we not let the bug eat you."

He thinks it over.

"OK. But can I still keep it?"

"Absolutely. In the garage."

The next morning we are headed out and before hopping into the car, Flik bounds over to the bug hotel sitting on top of the garbage can. At the bottom of the empty bug hotel lies a dead mosquito.

"I guess it died because we didn't feed it," he says.


"Oh well."

And with that, he skips over to the car and climbs in. It would be kinda' sad... if we weren't talking about a mosquito.