Today in the News: Just to clarify, I’m down to posting once or twice a week during the summer. I figure most people are out and about and hopefully not on the internet as much when the weather is nice. We will resume with our three posts per week schedule sometime in September.
Bear and I
Bear Grylls is a polarizing man about which most woods-types seem to have an opinion. But really, this post isn’t about him. It is about me…..and my stupidity. You like those posts, don’t you?
So we have bees. I wrote about it here. I can’t believe how low maintenance they are, really. You put them in the hive, stop and check on them once in awhile and harvest the honey at the end of the season. While our group got our first hives over a month ago, I had yet to buy one to become part of the co-op. So I purchased our hive a week ago and stumbled through the process of transfering the nucleus to the hive.
Last Friday, after working all day at the dump, I decided to stop by the honey house with Code-D, my coworker, and check on the status of the hive. Code-D wants bees as well, so he has been tagging along to gleen what little knowledge I can offer him.
We suited up and headed out to the hive without the smoker. I hadn’t been instructed on how to use that tool yet and didn’t want to burn down the honey house, so I refrained. Besides, I had been out to the hive a couple of times and didn’t see the need.
Code-D and I approached the hive and removed the top. There was a ton of activity and the bees appeared to be thriving. We were barely a minute into our operation when I felt something crawling in my beard. My adrenaline rushed, but I kept myself calm and tried to remember that getting stung was part of the business. Then I felt another. And another. And another. I looked over at Code-D and told him that I had a bee in my hood. That’s when I felt the first sting. Then the next, then the next. I realized that my suit was compromised. I started walking away from he hive area like a mall walker on Bath Salts and tried to keep my cool. I had a swarm on the outside of my suit and a swarm stinging me from the inside of my suit. I continued walking (now near panic) down the dirt driveway. Another sting, another step. When the bees on the outside of my suit started to clear I unzipped my hood. They were in my hair, in my ears and, most importantly, riding in my beard like a guy rides a stolen bike down Colfax. Then one got me in the mustache. My upper lip began to throb.
I lost all composure and started swinging. I pulled my Red Sox hat out of my suit and began persecuting them with swings that would match any player on the previously mentioned team. I knew that what I was doing was wrong – I just couldn’t control my instincts.
When the swarm cleared, my hood and my face were full of stingers. I had a hard time getting through my beard to pull out the venom sacks and my face immediately began to swell. By the time I made it home, I looked like a fat version of Howard the Duck. I had to shave off my beard to fully remove the venom sacks. I’m not happy about that.
I examined my suit and found that the netting on one side of the hood had separated from the seem, leaving a giant 9-inch gap that apparently looked like a super highway to the bees. It was only the second or third time I had used the suit. Needless to say, the company got an angry email from me shortly after. I think I might send them a package of Africanized bees.
This is how I usually look:
Here is how I looked roughly an hour after the incident.
Look, ma! No chin!
Cornelius, you damned dirty ape!
How does this make me like Bear Grylls? Watch this short video.
He swells up quite badly as well.
If you really want a hoot, check out this guy.
Mike, Oscar, Hotel…..out.