lam & pepper... and ants

One of the presents Lam got for his 7th birthday this year was an ant farm. He got it from his buddy Pepper.

See? This is Pepper and Lam being all weird at the party. They were all sugared up after having had some chocolate/vanilla ice cream cake. I think they enjoyed it.

Now, Lam and Pepper go way back. Back to the womb. At 8 weeks gestation to be precise.
I had just dismissed the hula class I'd been teaching every week to my girlfriends. As we were parting ways in the parking lot, I'd turned to Harmzie, and blurted out on impulse, "I have some news." And to my surprise, she said, "So do I."
And like a couple of souls bound by some weird pregnancy hormone thingy (yes, thingy), we knew exactly what the other was talking about.

Pepper was due on the 29th -- Lam on the 5th. Then they did a bit of a switcheroo with Lam coming early on the 29th, and Pepper coming fashionably late on the 10th.

Since then, they've been great friends and playmates. As evidenced by this picture* at Lam's 1st birthday party. Oh, such cute little babies!

They started nursery school together in the same class, which they totally loved because they'd been friends, since, you know, back in the day. Well, it wasn't before long that they got in trouble and had to be separated for hugging too much. Yeah, I know. Harmzie and I have done a lot of head-shaking, eye-rolling, and "what the hell?!"-ing about this. Even now 3 years later.

Whoa, totally digressing here... So, yeah, Pepper gave Lam an ant farm for his birthday.

All excited, we ordered the ants, and waited for their arrival. Well, half of them died, having gone unnoticed in our mail box on one of the hottest days of the summer. The other half seemed kinda weird and loagy.

For almost a week, they just stood there on the green gel, the carcases of their dead ant friends all over the place. I was thinking these were the strangest ants ever. Weren't they supposed to be busy all the time? I know bees are, but ants too, right?

Were they all frozen in confusion because they didn't have a Queen to order them about? Did these ants just smoke a doobie and were waiting for the earth to "just stop moving so fast!!!"? Or were they telepathically hatching a plot to take over the world? I don't know.

One day, we woke up, and they'd moved all of their dead to a pile at the back of the farm and covered the mound with the stuff they dug out of the tunnels. Or should I say "tunnel". Singular. They built one long tunnel up against the glass. It actually seemed kind of pointless.
Unless they were doing it do distract us while they executed their plan for world domination. "Here, foolish humans, watch as we dig." Then -- BAM! -- we're bowing to our new ant overlords.

Anyway, it's been a month now, and there's still only one tunnel. And the burial mound is looking kinda mouldy. Still, it's interesting to see them wandering around in there. I'm just wondering if we would've gotten better results if we'd not killed half of the ants...

... or just caught some from our garden.

* - Totally staged shot! No minors were given any alcohol, and no adults were drunk at this party. The children were well and properly cared for, and were fed yummy barbeque, cake, and lots of pansit noodles. They really liked the noodles.


  1. Yikes! I have that picture (or one taken with a different camera at the same time) in a frame in my room. I was *just* telling our Sushi-Larry crowd on Saturday about that picture. And um, yeah. Staged. Totally staged.

    Also, as you know, I'm still bitter about us switching our due dates. Even thought I ended up delivering one day after my *original* due date.

  2. My boys got in trouble for hugging too much too. One wasn't hugging, but said he was. It's a weird world when they can't promote love in schools.
    Happy Birthday to the kiddies.

  3. @Laura: Thanks! :)

    @Harmzie: really?! funny that you talked about it, then suddenly there it is. guess I was channeling again. :)
    I wouldn't have minded keeping my later date. I was still savouring my first pregnancy. Another week would've been okay.

    @Kyooty: oh, the hugging itself was fine -- the hugging so hard that they'd fall over and bang their heads was NOT fine.