SARGE: The Screen Door

Years ago I lived in a pleasant rental property carrying a provincial air more reminiscent of the little houses on the prairie than sitting on the fringe of a neighborhood in Jacksonville, Florida. It was well constructed, with sufficient windows to allow the sea-borne breezes accompany the ocean currents pushing north. The only reason I left it was because of employment elsewhere.

The house is a pleasant memory colored by time and melancholy. But it wasn’t a totally idyllic scene. There are always flies in the ointment and weevils in the flour if you’re not careful.

One day, I walked to the screen door protecting the kitchen from the back porch. A cat was attached to the screen in that stupid pose cats assume when attached to something with their claws. I shot the cat with my weapon of choice for such cases: a squirt-gun. The cat pulled himself loose with a speed and acrobatic skill no other animal can reproduce. He split the screen in all four areas his paws once held and I, procrastinator that I am, said I’d fix it later.

Yeah. Right!

I let the problem ride for a while and then for a longer while. As it was spring I felt I had better things to do being newly married (wink-wink), I decided to simply forget about it. It was a dumb move.

Soon the house was taken over by the insect realm. The Pearl Harbor strike force held nothing approaching the number of mosquitoes and biting flies took to dive bombing, biting and in general discomfiting and discomforting my bride and myself. I’m allergic to mosquito stings and produce a swelling that, though not deadly is quite uncomfortable. My bride was allergic to insecticides. What could we do?

She went home to live with her parents. I went to work swatting and killing. I did a poor imitation of Rachel Carson’s book, “Silent Spring” and attacked with the intent to annihilate anything flew, buzzed,   stung or bit. I tried “natural” insecticides. I tried attracting more birds. I tried every known folk cure offered by the elderly. So I broke down knowing I’d need to use insecticides more the equivalent of Hiroshima than Geneva. I was fully aware I’d need to hand wash every surface to remove any chemical residue lest my girl come in contact with the poison and suffer for it.

As I couldn’t afford a professional exterminator, I suited up, sprayed the heck out of the place, dumped all water from containers and blasted city hall for NOT having cleaned the ditches in the areas of the malarial dive bombers making me look like the welted and inflamed hemorrhoid they surely felt I was becoming. The vermin never subsided.

One day one of the city workers sent to endure my wrath explain the process of cleaning the ditches and the neighborhood spraying to come made an observation. “You know it would help a lot if you mended that screen on the door. It keeps the bugs out. Then you can plant some Lavender or get some Cedar Chips and place them under the windows outside. Skeeters don’t like ‘em. But you have to fix that screen or they’ll keep coming back.”

They drained the ditches and a small pond more a big puddle than a water park. I ran to the hardware store, bought a bunch of fragrant cedar chips, planted some Lavender and within a short period of time I had not only a “skeeter” free zone but a pleasant smelling household when the breeze blew as well.

So what’s the point? Have I wasted this much time telling a simple country fable to bore you? Or, is there a more nefarious intent noted. (Go with the nefarious intent. I don’t want to wreck my reputation).

The southern border is the screen with the rips in it. The unsecured border is like the screen in that it has no integrity. It doesn’t stop any bugs. The border stops no illegals entering America.

The government is the screen and it’s badly ripped in that it has no integrity. It’s letting the bugs in and now; it’s allowing Ebola patients in without being fully aware the best way to avoid any type of infestation is to not allow it into your country in the first place. The best way to avoid a pestilence like Ebola is to quarantine the affected countries and people until they are safe and well.

You don’t let them through the screen in the first place like this administration is allowing.

Some cures are simple. Those responsible for resolving the issues can be too stupid to accept the simplicity of the cure. But, I’m wouldn’t want to name names in this statement.

Thanks for listening.

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