Unsolicited Advice #1: Mantids

If perchance you are ever cleaning a gardener’s house and find a years-old container labelled “Praying Mantids, 2 egg cases, approx. 200 eggs per case”…

… don’t open it. Nothing in there will bring you joy. Besides, it’s disrespectful to disturb a mass grave.

At least they said their prayers?



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  1. I think I felt that shudder all the way in Missouri. Thank you for not including a picture of what you found. Ugh…


  2. Rapunzel (aka Mom) says:

    Remember in Loogootee when we brought that pretty cocoon in and kept it in a jar, and it hatched out a zillion tiny mantids? They were so tiny and perfect and adorable!


  3. Rapunzel (aka Mom) says:

    PS- Lovely tile!


  4. Aw, poor mantises-that-were. I’ve loved mantises since I was a kid, when my brother found one while we were camping and had great fun playing with it until it jumped on his face. I think that scream was heard all ’round the campground.


  5. EWW EWW EWW EWWWWWW. (says the lady who’s terrified of fat bugs and creeped out by mantis’s triangular heads)


  6. I was just going to mention the “butterfly” cucoon incident. I remember you and Mom ferrying scores of wee mantids to the front door in your cupped hands. We found the odd one here and there for the rest of the day. Education is so educational, heh heh.


  7. Jacob – The experience was equal parts “those poor babies!” and “AAAAAAHHHHHH, MY EYES!”

    Rapunzel (aka Mom) – I certainly haven’t forgotten the day I sat down at the piano and realized it was covered in baby mantids. Some memories never fade.

    Mia – Have you ever noticed how many mantis stories end with “and then it grabbed his face and wouldn’t let go”? They can defend themselves, by golly.

    I like the word ‘mantis’ because it’s an anagram for ‘damn it.’

    Millie– Millie, we are two of a kind.

    RachyBif – Somehow, I can’t picture myself touching mantids with my bare hands. Mom certainly could.


  8. Woah.
    And gross.
    What is it with you and bugs lately?


    Rebekah Reply:

    Oh Chelsea, if only I knew! When the ants starting coming in through an electrical outlet (!), I wanted to lie down and cry for a hundred years.


  9. I was visiting some fndreis in Ojai, CA on the hottest day of the year, actually the hottest day in 30 years. (111) After searching for five minutes I found a beautiful green female adult Carolina Mantis. They are one of a few bugs that exhibit behavior similar to cats. And she didn’t want to get off my hand either. Preening and glancing up at me with my ridiculous camera. It brought me back to the early days in the ’70s when my whole life was about insects and spiders. Mantids are beyond elegant and grace, perhaps the word perfect’ could be used. Thanks for the great read by the way.


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