The moment I turned the light on, these flying bugs surrounded me with their erratic arial antics that defied my hand slaps and swats and I am yelling things like: “Hello. What manner of creatures are these wonderfully endowed aerialists, and who let them in?” Actually, that’s not literally what I said, but you get the idea.

Welcome to the world of the Indian Meal Moth, and the various other minuscule flying, crawling, and burrowing bugs that thrive on grains, cereals, meals and other milled materiel that are plentiful in most kitchens. Don’t worry: they didn’t just get off the jumbo jet from New Deli. They are naturalized American citizens who vote just like you do. And they love to eat the same kind of cereal grains you love. And they are better at getting at it than you are.

Personally I’m fed up with these pests! Those among you who think of yourselves as purists, and are somehow of a more elevated class than the rest of us who are willing to draw blood for blood by using the latest chemical poison, I have only this to say to you – bugger off! I have an INSECTICIDE BOMB THAT WILL KILL THE VERY AIR IN WHICH THESE PESTS FLY! But they are still here. They are the red squirrel of the pantry.

Once, they were so bad I couldn’t even open my mouth without the real possibility of inhaling one of them. Go on and blame me, if you must. I don’t care. This is a stand your ground situation. If I thought I could actually hit one of them I’d draw my little .38 caliber Smith and blow them away. But, alas. all I would accomplish would be the ventilating of my super insulated walls and ceiling, letting in the elements and creating a view to the stars and Mars above.

OK, I just had to say that. What I really will do is go through my well stocked larder and throw out anything that even thinks about being infected. I will then clean those containers and drawers and cabinets with acid if necessary to eradicate every footprint, fecal stain and larval web thatch so that the next time I come home the air is clear of flying things and I can dig into a bin of quinoa or masa or muesli without fear that some invader has been there before me, and is lying in wait to fly up my nose.

I seriously suspect that in some moment of morning haste I have poured a portion of muesli in my bowl and doused it with a little milk and a few blueberries and consumed a colony of those bugs without even knowing it. I try not to think about that possibility for more than a fleeting moment. I try only to concentrate on the added protein that I fortuitously inherited.

One of my Birkenstock friends who knows all about this kind of thing, once told me that they come in already living in the meal, grain and cereal that I buy. So there’s no hope. I suppose I could wash all the meal, cereal, grain and my beloved muesli. My mind freezes up at the thought.

By now I am half way to being depressed. I think I feel a chocolate chip cookie coming on. Now, if you bake the cookie, ten minutes at 350˚, that should kill the bugs – right? But the protein remains. Right?

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