Gut Rumbles

June 30, 2004

thanks, Jack!

I had a dilemma on my hands. My doorbell rang this afternoon and it was Young Jack, all excited and bouncing up and down as if he needed to pee really bad. "Mr. Rob! Mr. Rob! Come look at THIS!" He grabbed my hand and tugged me around to the side of my house. "SEE! LOOK!" I looked. Jack gave me an "I TOLD you so" grin.

Bejus. I had a hornet's nest the size of a pineapple hanging from the eaves of my roof right beneath the satellite disc. I know a hornet's nest when I see one. My friends and I used to throw rocks and dirt clods at them when we were kids. We'd knock one down and run like hell. Then, we'd meet back in the woods and compare stings. (Note to ALL little boys and young men: I don't care how fast you think you are--- you ain't gonna outrun a pissed-off hornet.)

I looked up at the nest. One scout was circling lazily around the hole at the bottom as I calculated what to do. "Let's get a stick and HIT IT, Mr. Rob!" suggested Jack. I grabbed Jack by the neck and choked him to death.

Okay, I didn't choke Jack, but I thought seriously about doing it. Get a stick and HIT IT? Got-dam! That boy obviously never disturbed a hornet's nest the size of this one before. I told Jack to get in the house. "But I wanna watch," he whined. "Yeah, and I want you to LIVE to watch," I replied.

I put Jack in the house, donned a pair of blue jeans, a flannel shirt (it's only 95 degrees outside) work gloves and hiking boots. I grabbed my shepard's crook and a can of Raid. I started to get my damn safety goggles, too, but I wanted to act while the weather was right. A rainstorm was coming and most of the hornets would be back in the nest now. I pulled a camoflage hat low over my brow, and out the door I went. "I'll be back," I told Jack.

I snuck up to that nest and nuked the scout with a Raid-blast. He fell from the sky. I nuked the nest next, and saw some gasping refugees attempting to escape. I nuked them some more. Then, I took my crook and smashed the nest to the ground. Whoa! That's a LOT of hornets! They resembled boiling water! I ran like hell, leaving a trail of Raid-fumes in my wake as cover fire.

I didn't receive a single sting, although a couple of those angry bastards buzzed pretty close to my head before I made the front door. Jack asked, "Did you get them, Mr. Rob?" I told Jack that I thought so, but the most important thing was that they didn't get me. I went out later and set the nest on fire. I am a killer of baby hornets.

And I feel good about it.


LOL, good story.

Posted by: doug on June 30, 2004 07:43 PM


Post pictures of the burned-out nest and include many close-ups. I want to make sure that all of those little fuckers are really dead.

Posted by: D.J. M.B. on June 30, 2004 07:55 PM

Now see, I've never actually thrown rocks at a hornet's nest, but I have this talent for learning from other people's mistakes. Here's hoping Jack does too.

Posted by: McGehee on June 30, 2004 08:13 PM

Wish we had that on tape!

Posted by: wes jackson on June 30, 2004 08:13 PM

I had a similar experience with a wasp's nest the size of a basketball under my back deck.

I went one step further, though. I put on ALL of my motorcycle gear: Full face helmet with shield, leather jacket, leather chaps, boots, and up-to-the-elbows gauntlets. I dove under the porch like someone in a John Woo movie with a can of Raid in each hand.

Sprayed that fucker until both cans ran dry. Then I got out from under the porch and sprayed stragglers with a new can until THAT one ran out. Then I got the hose and washed them all into the gulley.

I hate stinging bugs with a violent passion.

Posted by: Jay G (a.k.a. Guy) on June 30, 2004 08:45 PM

We didn't have hornets where I grew up, but we did have big mean wasps that built huge paper nests under the eaves of houses.

When I was a kid, we used to throw rocks at them and knock them down, just like you did with hornet's nests. We'd run like hell, but like you we always got a few stings.

One day one of my friend's teenaged brothers told us that if you stood rock-still after you knocked down a nest, you wouldn't get stung. He said that if you were perfectly still the wasps couldn't see you.

I didn't believe him, but my friends kept daring me to try it. One day I got my nerve (or my stupidity, more like it) up and tried it. I thought sure I'd get stung all over, but damned if it didn't work.

It took a lot of effort to hold still while the wasps swarmed around me on the way to my running buddies, but I did it. Didn't get one sting.

Wonder if that would work with hornets?

Posted by: Phil on June 30, 2004 08:46 PM

Phil, I wouldn't want to try it, especially with a nest that big. I remember as a boy, a friend of mine and myself got a yellow jacket nest good and riled up. Yellow jackets nest in the ground. Anyway, bees were all over the place, and his little sister wanted to play in that general area. We warned her not to, but she responded, "They won't sting me, I didn't do anything to them." We both got a real good laugh—and an even better beating—out of that one.

Posted by: Anthony L. on July 1, 2004 09:42 AM

I think hornets were the inspiration for the invention of napalm.

Posted by: Larry on July 2, 2004 03:34 PM


Posted by: null on August 29, 2004 04:52 PM
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