Category Archives: bugs

Saturdays With Gingerbread


This is the pen and ink start of an illustration of the novel I am working on, Recipes for Gingerbread Children.

I admit that my obsession with the benefits of gingerbread is mostly in my head.  Specifically, in my sinuses.  I find products with ginger in them, diet ginger ale, ginger teas, and especially gingerbread cookies, help reduce the tightness in my COPD-laced lungs, clear my sinuses, and make breathing mercifully easier.  Gingerbread cookies are also seasonally wonderful in that they are slightly Christmassy and help bring my family together.


So, yesterday, a Saturday, my daughter the Princess and I executed a perfectly evil plan to commit evil acts of gingerbread and whip up some wicked little gingerbread men in a frenzy of deliciously evil bakery.

Okay, maybe not evil exactly…  but I have diabetes and the Princess desperately wants to lose some weight, neither condition being one that benefits by having the temptation of wicked little gingerbread men around.


And, as with any evil plan, many things proceeded to go awry.  We did not have any actual flour available to make the gingerbread dough less butter-and-egg sticky.  All we had was some corn starch… which had bugs in it.  After struggling to craft sticky little bodies a few times, we decided to go ahead and use the tainted corn starch.  After all, a few little larvae that get overlooked and not picked out will only add a bit of extra protein, right?


And we had the added bonus that you can make just as much mess with corn starch and margarine as you can with flour and butter!


But we did get the corn-starchy little buggers baked.  (And they were probably literally buggers due to the potential for having bugs in them.  Oh well, it should fortify the old immune systems.)


The only decoration we had was chocolate frosting, since someone ate all the sprinkles and sugar dots we bought last year for the gingerbread house.  (Don’t look at me.  I have diabetes.)  So we frosted them, prompting the Princess to begin calling them “little burnt souls blackened in hell”.


So then the cookie cannibals could allow the eating to begin.


Mmmm!  Good cookie!

Okay, I know it looks like the Princess did all the work, and all I did was eat them.  But somebody had to do the hard work of taking all the pictures, right?




Filed under bugs, fairies, family, humor, illustrations, imagination, Paffooney, strange and wonderful ideas about life

The World is Buggy

I decided to share with you an old, old pencil drawing entitled “This Is an Insect’s World” because I am a little bit in the mood for crazy and bugs are driving me there.  Not Bugs Bunny, mind you, but real bugs.


The main problem is the bizarre Texas weather year we are having this summer.  Spring was a constant drizzle-fest of rain and flash flooding.  Our cracked and broken-down swimming pool was clear full and a perfect breeding ground for bugs.  Fortunately I managed to find some anti-mosquito stuff to put in the pool to kill the squito-wigglers.  But unfortunately it also killed off the dragon fly larvae that do such a wonderful job of eating the bugs, tadpoles, and other small future-bugs that always infest a stagnant unused swimming pool.  So many wonderful creepy crawlies that we don’t usually get a lot of are now trying to get out of the August heat by coming indoors and cuddling up with the people and the family dog that are supposed to live here.  We have a virtual insect zoo inside the house.  Lovely carpet beetles wiped out two full boxes of Cheerios.  Moths are breeding in our closets.  Even mud-dauber wasps found their way into our bedroom to make my wife jump and screech and me have to catch a potential stinger-packing murderer in my hat and crush it and flush it.  (And I did it too, without getting stung, and only having the thing fly out of the toilet in my face to be batted back into the bowl only one time).


Now, of course, not all bugs are bad bugs.  Some are benign and some are even helpful in a live-in-the-garden-and-pollinate-the-flowers sort of way.   But the thing is, in this world we live in, they outnumber us by a hundred billion.  There are more bugs on this earth alive right now than all the people who have ever lived… and even will ever live on this planet for the duration of life on Earth.  Well, hopefully that is an exaggeration… but it isn’t by very much.

bug town

And bugs are an excellent subject for a surrealist like me.  They can be made into bug people or monsters with ease.  If you look at bugs really closely, they are absolutely hideous alien beings that frighten the bejeezus out of normal people.  (I am not trying to suggest bug enthusiasts are not normal, but I used to collect butterflies as a kid and I can assure you they are not.)  So, this is my totally buggy essay replete with buggy Paffoonies, and that is almost all I have to say about that.  But let me end with a nod to Max Fleischer and his animated surrealist masterpiece, Hoppity Goes to Town.

Dang!  That sure is full of bugs!

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Filed under bugs, humor, Paffooney