By Dave Coulter
I was pretty sure this evening as I was walking home that I heard my first cicada of the season. I can't entirely be certain, as the call - an abbreviated "bzzzt" - seemed to come from a high rooftop. It only called once, and the din of traffic from Lake Street dominated the summer symphony.
I'm a big fan of all cicadas, annual and periodic. 2011 is not our year for the periodic invasion, so I'm guessing if I did hear my cicada tonight it was of the annual sort. I think now that we have some heat these days the bugs are finally in their glory. My ankles got chewed up by mosquitos last night. Small punishment for playing kickball, barefoot in the grass.
Despite my childhood indoctrination by Charlotte's Web I'm not sympathetic to all spiders. It depends on size, charisma and location. I will tolerate, and even play with a tiny jumping spider. But the other morning one of those little pale yellow spiders was striding across my dashboard while I was on the expressway. He got smashed - the distraction was too great. In deference to the spirit of Charlotte I have been known at times to shout "Hey! Some Pig!" before they get mooshed. I'm not completely heartless.
So all the tiny creatures of summer are alive. Ants and bees, spiders and wasps. Fireflies are now blinking around town. That Carpenter bee that was buzzing around E's yard is gone. We're not sure if he has fulfilled his reproductive duties for the season, moved on, or both. We only knew him for a short time, but he was a fan favorite. Big enough to see, no stinger, and personality to spare.
Maybe that's why I'm looking forward to the cicada season. They're uncommon enough that it's kind of a treat to find one. They bring alive the sound of summer. Just in time, I say.