Your 171-Word Mini Florida Culture Lesson

There are any number of vermin, reptiles and insect life here on the great limerock state of Florida. I hate most of them, especially the snakes. They are horrible and beady-eyed, writhing sickeningly through the grass. They often blend in with the blades so that every step on a lawn could set off a flickering tongue. My second most hated Florida critter is the no-see-‘um.

Y’all call ’em “midges” in other parts of the U.S.A. We call ’em “no-see-‘um”s here ’cause, well, you can’t see them. You’re sitting outside on the porch with a Bud, watching the folks inside through the screen door, and suddenly you’re whacking the new crop of welts on your arms and legs. They come out at dusk in their magic cloaked swarms, jeering at the all-too-visible palmetto bugs and fire ants, and flock towards light sources … which is probably why I’m clawing at my ankles and forearms as I type in the lamplight, raking up a nice crop of angry red lumps. Time for bed, y’all.

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