Ants in the Coffeepot (and other things that make me crazy)

IMG_0460-0For the last week or so, we have spotted ants on the kitchen counter. It was usually after a heavy rain, and it’s also as the weather begins to cool. We thought it was just the periodic foragers for fall, and made our usual precautions: moved the sugar bowl off the counter, put the honey bear in a water moat, and were scrupulous about cleaning the counters. We put out a few random “ant traps” but didn’t cover things with chemicals. This is, after all, where I prepare food!

This week the ants were busier, and there was a “line” of them. Stopping and “talking” in “ant code” and then bustling on back to their terminus, we would clean a few off the counter and go about our day. We kept looking for home base but didn’t find it. The usual suspects (the compost bucket and the honey bear) were carefully monitored. Last night I thought I had found the nest – under my African violet. I quickly rinsed the pot, moated it and went to bed, feeling victorious.

HUZZAH! No more ants!

(You know where this is going, don’t you?)

This morning, as Bearded Brewer was on his daily inspection and sleuthing of the ants, he moved the coffee pot. Lo and hehold, ants came streaming out of the back of the coffee pot! It’s the kind of pot that has a reservoir and a “cup-at-a-time” dispenser. And apparently, the dark, heated spot was ideal for warmth-seeking ants. He quickly poured his as yet uncaffeinated spouse a cup of coffee, and then moved the coffeepot outside.

I went to look at the pot. The bottom and inside were COVERED with ants! Not the part where the coffee brews or the reservoir where it is stored. Just all up underneath in the “guts” of the heating element and the wiring. I couldn’t wash it, and I didn’t want to put ant poison on it. Coffee with ant spray just doesn’t cut it.IMG_0459

This morning I’m going to buy a new coffeepot. I’m also going to call the refrigerator repair place and find out when they can come fix the ice-maker which is ( — correction — WAS) spraying water all over the kitchen wall, onto the floor.

Then I think I will solve one of the biggest mysteries of the universe: why cats always hork a hairball at least twice, and ALWAYS in the middle of the step. On carpet.

It’s the random little events that make me nuts. Not the big crises. I seem to be able to rise to the moments of greatest need for myself or those I care about.

But the jerk on the Beltway that cuts me off? Ants in my coffeepot? Hork on the basement steps? A busted refrigerator waterline? THOSE nibble at my patience and scrape away at my self-indulgence. And they are minuscule inconveniences in the grand scheme of things.

May we each remember what matters and get upset by the things which are world-changing. Despite my desire for morning caffeination, ants in the coffeepot doesn’t make the list.







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