though i haven't yet begun to master mr. miage's chopstick style, i am growing more adept with the hand clap method. i've been getting a good deal of practice. and i no longer care if i'm breaking st. francis's heart.
fruit flies are in a state of blissful confusion around our place, wondering if they've died and risen up to their sweet, ripe mango hereafter. it's an illusion, though, because they die for real between my palms when i get the timing just right.
i remember thinking, not long after moving here, that i'd do everything possible to keep those critters out of my kitchen. never having seen them in a house before, i'd witnessed, one time too many, the fruit fly invasion that descended upon my in-laws' bananas. a silent, unanimous vote from the me, myself and i triumvirate ruled that bananas were right out. i've only broken the law once.
but those sneaky little insects didn't follow the yellow banana road to our house. they stumbled upon the far more satisfying alternate route that is eau de compost, the scent of fermenting apple cores and onion peels. not long after we initiated in earnest our dually beneficial gardening strategy, leaving less for the garbage truck to pick up and more for our calla lilies to grow lovely, the fruit fly lord and his minions arrived and feasted in jubilant abandon.
we, in turn, have opted not to abandon the compost pit, deciding that we can improve our reflexes and hand-eye coordination as we hold the tiny enemies at bay. we've got our work cut out for us; i learned from a kentucky extension agent these frightening tidbits: "the reproductive potential of fruit flies is enormous; given the opportunity, they will lay about 500 eggs." it doesn't stop there, because, "the entire life-cycle from egg to adult can be completed in about a week." oh, dear.
the good news is that they seem much happier around the compost mother lode, rather than settling for the comparatively disappointing discovery of a ripe mango in the kitchen fruit bowl. the bad news is that we have a mini-fridge, encouraging fond memories of living in new york, while discouraging the placement of multiple pounds of fruit in an already overstuffed space. so the fruit will continue to occupy counter top bowls, given the present conundrum, and i'll continue to practice my fruit fly assassination skills. i hope that their hereafter is, indeed, sweet. the mango i've just saved from their minuscule mouths certainly is.