Sunday, January 13, 2013


What's the deal with cicadas? What's their life cycle? When's their busy season? What's the purpose of that noise they make?1 Hmm...2

1 Sitting at the dinner table the other night, I heard a weird noise behind me, an intermittent drone. After a time, it became constant. At first I just noticed it. Then it started to drive me crazy, not the sound itself but not knowing what it was. I couldn't tell if it was inside or outside, man-made or natural. Some wayward kitchen appliance? The water bubbler right behind me?  I thought of cicadas, but then I thought: we don't have cicadas right now. (Or at least I hadn't noticed them and this is the sort of thing I generally notice.) Finally, I couldn't stand it any more. I got up and shifted my position around to triangulate the point of origin, and I realized the sound was indeed coming from outside. I opened the door and whoomp! the full cicada symphony. Amazingly loud. Why now? Why all of a sudden in mid-January? Explain yourself, Mr. Cicada.

2 Google could tell me, but where's the fun in that?


  1. Anonymous9:00 PM

    We used to call them "locusts".

    1. Yeah, I was always fuzzy on that. We talked about locusts too, and I wasn't entirely sure how or if they were different from cicadas.