Stinging Workers

This weekend I did a bit of research on yellowjackets and I found the Schmidt Sting Pain Index. Is it real? Here is part of it:

2.0 Bald-faced hornet: Rich, hearty, slightly crunchy. Similar to getting your hand mashed in a revolving door.
2.0 Yellowjacket: Hot and smoky, almost irreverent. Imagine W. C. Fields extinguishing a cigar on your tongue.
2.x Honey bee and European hornet: Like a matchhead that flips off and burns on your skin.

I was stung by a yellowjacket a long time ago and it hurt really bad. I was a fully formed adult at the time and I’m not excessively wimpy about pain and I really wanted to sit down and cry. Even though the sound of wailing children is really annoying, don’t you sometimes envy them? Haven’t you ever been tired and rundown and nothing is going the way you want it to and wished you could just throw your head back and shriek in the middle of the grocery store? I know I have.

I’m glad adults don’t do this because the social boundaries that keep everyday life tolerable are disintegrating fast enough as it is. There was an article in the NYT on Sunday about how liberating young people find it to talk about how much money they make with each other. Good for them. I don’t talk about how much money I make with my husband. I think the world is just fine with things people don’t talk about. Have you ever had one of those awkward conversations where someone you met 5 minutes ago starts telling you about their cysts?

Hm, I’m getting off track here. Back to the stingy thing: for some reason I thought that honeybee stings were negligible. I guess I’ve never been stung by one.

I finished another story this weekend which was why I did the yellowjacket research. It’s hard to have a meal outside at my folks’ house because of the yellowjackets but the university extension had a great tip which involved hanging a fish over a tub of water. I can’t wait to try it.

This has nothing to do with my story. The story is one I’ve worked on and off on for quite some time and it’s not a terrible story but I’m not sure it’s especially creative or has a point but I’m trying to get in the habit of finishing things. Somewhere I have a quote from Ray Bradbury where he said he’d written at least 600 stories but only published 150 (made up numbers because I don’t know where the quote is and besides, it’s probably 20 years old and he’s probably written another 600 stories since then) and he was still learning. At the rate I’m going, it’ll take me 85 years to hit 600 stories.

Update: I found the Ray Bradbury quote and it’s from 1967 and it says he wrote 2,000 stories but published 300. At my rate it will take 200 years to write 2,000 stories.

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