Gut Rumbles

October 14, 2005

what's in a name?

People can call the giant, flying cockroaches we grow around here "Palmetto Bugs" all they want to, but they're just giant, flying cockroaches to me.

They usually live outside, but they have a strange fondness for crawling into your house after a big rain or if the weather turns cold. You'll notice them when you see what resembles a large cigar butt with wings scuttling across the floor (or up the wall and across the ceiling.).

I never had any use for those critters except to kill them, but maybe they could serve a useful purpose. Yeah. Feed 'em nitro and strap little bombs to them.

THAT'S real terrorism.


I never saw anything that creepy (palmetto bugs) till I went to Barbados, and if the fact that they were HUGE werent disgusting enough, the realization that they could fly had me rethinking the whole vacation in the tropics thing.

And just when I thought the BUGs were the ickiest thing I had seen in a dogs age, imagine my surprise when we came back to the hotel room after dinner, turned on the lights and found tiny LIZARDS in our room.....

Slept with the lights on for the duration of the "holiday" and couldnt wait to get back to Connecticut where the only bugs we have are OUTSIDE and the only LIZARDS we have are in the pet shops.

Posted by: Ruth on October 14, 2005 03:10 PM

Aw, man, I had one of those in my bathroom yesterday morning. My daughter freaked the hell out...I pish poshed her and went in there and stared that thing eyeball to eyeball...and promptly apologized to my daughter and told her to continue carrying on like a girl. Then I washed that puppy down the drain...praying all the while that it wouldn't find it's wings. I just know that bastard is going to find it's way right back out of the drain, too. EWWWW!

Posted by: Kelly on October 14, 2005 03:44 PM

Damn palmetto bugs like to hang out in my truck cover that lies crumpled in a corner of my warehouse bay most of the time. Everytime I move that thing, they come flying out in all directions. I'll probably get nailed by a scorpion one day cause I'm paying attention to the palmettos.

Nother bug that will give the palmetto bug a run for its money on the ugly scale is the Mole Cricket. This thing don't look a bit like Jimminy.

Posted by: Larry Kephart on October 14, 2005 04:15 PM

You're correct, Rob: they're nothing more than huge fucking cockroaches that--adding insult to injury--can fly. I've always assumed that the phrase "palmetto bug" was a yankee thing.

Posted by: D.J. M.B. on October 14, 2005 04:42 PM

The best way to get of the damn things is to step stomp hell out of 'em! Anymore when I see one I yell at sweetthing, "GO GET MY COWBOY BOOTS" then I try to get one in a corner where it can get away. Them cowboy boots have sharp toes and just fit in a corner. I wonder if cowboys had a lot of palmetto bugs and thats why they invented them sharp toed boots?

And I do thankee Rob for the acidbath. Been out all afternoon and came back to see my meter spinning. You do be the tall dog in the bloggin world!

Posted by: GUYK on October 14, 2005 04:42 PM

We dont have palmetto bugs up north here, in fact I never saw a cockroach/palmetto bug till I breached the Mason Dixon line (and further) Cockroaches are a southern thing folks...Worst I have to deal with is a run of the mill mosquito or housefly....

Posted by: Ruth on October 14, 2005 04:45 PM

We had pale flying crickets in Virginia. Ughhh!
And in Kansas we had "stinkbugs/pincher bugs" My kids were terrified of those.
Are palmettos what we call "water bugs" here in Louisiana?
I must admit, I am most afraid of lizards..

Posted by: Library Lady on October 14, 2005 06:42 PM

I like to use them for target practice with my .44 Desert Eagle. Sometimes they are pretty good dipped in chocolate if you're smoking the right stuff beforehand. Cockroaches have been here since the time of the dinosaurs and I have no doubt they will be here long after humans become extinct.

Posted by: assrot on October 14, 2005 07:48 PM

In WWII the Army had an idea to fasten tiny incendiary devices to thousand of bats in order to drop 'em in Tokyo at night. The theory was that the bats would find places to roost in the ricepaper and bamboo splint houses favored by the Sons of Heaven at the time. The incendiaries would be timed to go off just at sunrise after the bats roosted and before peole had left for work. One problem as I remember it was the bat's lift capacity was insufficient and test bats simply plummeted to the ground.

Another problem was due to the time involved in arming the winged menaces. They began dieing of thirst and stress before the entire load could be armed.

Oh, well. It looked good on paper.

Posted by: Gerry N. on October 14, 2005 07:51 PM

When we lived in the country, we had what my ex called waterbugs. Looked like flying roaches to me.

I'm in Northern California, and we have the regular run-of-the-mill cockroaches here....they crawl out of the gutters at night in the old historic district downtown. No other kind of monster bugs, though....I was telling my daughter about life with Junebugs growing up in Wisconsin - and fireflys, of course. My ex, born and raised here, told me that fireflys weren't real. I said "oh really? I used to catch them in jars."

But HE had never seen one, so of course I was wrong.

Posted by: Trish on October 14, 2005 07:52 PM

They make great musky bait!

Posted by: livey on October 14, 2005 09:35 PM

We have slugs here at Bearwallow Hollow.
Great big fat nasties.
You need to read this to believe it:

Posted by: darbimae on October 15, 2005 12:10 AM

Like you, I've no use for these nasty things. Go easy stepping on them though...they squrt when crunched..........

Posted by: Wm H on October 15, 2005 12:46 AM

The snootier folks out here insist on calling those things "waterbugs" -- cuz they like to hang out under the concrete watermeter covers, & in the crawl spaces under houses -- my achin' ass! A roach is a roach is a roach, & those are the biggest & nastiest of the bunch. Gross mofos. Yuck!!

Posted by: Marianne in CA on October 15, 2005 02:39 AM

Yeah and they make excellent cat toys. I've heard them referred to as palmetto bugs, tree roaches, waterbugs and, my personal favorite, shouted excitedly, "Oh my god, it's huge, get the fucking thing out of here, quick, now, OH MY GOD!!!"

Or something like that! Thanks for the smile, Rob!

Posted by: Joni on October 15, 2005 10:25 AM

Giving the roach a "pet name" means that you don't have to deal with it.

One time we stayed in a pretty expensive resort on Amelia Island and found these giant roaches in the condo. I called room services and described the problem and wanted them to spray or move us. They said, "Oh, those are just Pametto Bugs, as though that was some charming local life form that we should cherish as part of our vacation experience.

From now on when my wife complains about roaches or ants and I don't want to be bothered, I'll rename them something cute and can be sure that she'll let me get away with that.

Posted by: Woody on October 15, 2005 06:51 PM

Apologies to all for possibly creating trouble, but this MUST be said.

Joni? You're wrong! WRONG!

My almost 90-lb. canine proves (PROVES!) that palmetto bugs aren't "toys" reserved for only cats.

(I really like that end table over there, anyway.)

Posted by: Doyle on October 15, 2005 10:05 PM

Absolutely nothing is uglier than a Jerusalem Cricket! The only good news is that they don't fly. *shudder*

Posted by: Barb on October 18, 2005 12:39 AM
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