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Fun With Insects

How different were insects and bugs 25 years ago from today? Well one main difference is that today we do not see many dragonflies and lightning bugs as there were back then. With a lot of trees and not too much development the air was literally full of these insects 25 years ago, and because the children did not have much entertainment back then, well, they had fun with these bugs.

You might think this was crude but children used to catch dragonflies and insert a thin blade of grass into its tail and then release the bug to fly. The kids had fun watching the poor dragonflies flying awkwardly due to the extra weight on to their tails.

But wait, we also tied a piece of thread onto their tails and let them fly. We looked at them as living kites and we competed to see which bug would soar the highest before falling tired to the ground. And finally kids tied about twenty of them on pieces of thread and fastened them to a light object and see them elevate like helium balloons. They say idleness is the devil’s workshop. This was true back then because the kids did not have many toys and computers games to play with.

Now, what do you do with fire flies? First you place them in your pocket at night and pretend that you have some electronic light in your pocket. But the more creative kids used to place the fire flies in their hair and it acted as some decoration at night too. But as recent as in Melody’s childhood, only 20 years ago, she and her friends used to cut off the abdomen or the rear end of the bug that had the florescent glow. They used to rub the flourescent fluid on their arms and run about the place enjoying the light show on their arms.

Now the August cricket is a bug that makes a screeching sound or noise. We used to catch them and take them to the classroom and let them go off in the silence of the class. The noise was not the fun part. The fun part was to intrigue the teacher to see if she could find the culprit, or worse yet to put the blame on another kid by casting the cricket on his or her desk.

Indeed it does sound like mischief done 25 years ago, but consider that kids did not have as many forms of entertainment back then as they do today. So do we give them a thumbs up or an A for creativity?

– by Angel Nuñez, Columnist

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