Big milestone yesterday as I was doing laundry in our building's basement. As I was loading the washing machine, out of the corner of my eye I spotted what seemed to be a small dog scooting across the floor. I quickly realized it was a roach! My first New York cockroach!
Granted, it was big. Bigger than most I saw in Georgia. That said, I still think at 3 1/2 inches long, it was smaller that some of the monsters I used to fight in South Carolina. (South Carolinians try and mitigate things through language. They refer to "cockroaches" as "palmetto bugs." These are the same people who refer to the Civil War as "the recent unpleasantness.")
The only weapon I had in what I've now referred to as The Battle of The Laundryroom Roach was my bottle of liquid laundry detergent. So I reared back and repeatedly smashed the bug until I turned back up in the middle of the laundry room. I then returned upstairs to get my next load of laundry and something to pick up the bug and dispose of it.
But like the Battle of Bull Run, there was a First and Second Bull Run. When I returned, I found out the bug had just been "playing possum," and it was slowly climbing the wall attempting to regroup for further action. Startled, I shouted "What, you're still alive?" Then I grabbed the laundry bottle and whacked it four or five times against the side of the wall, this time making sure the bug was completely crushed.
Suddenly, I heard to the lock on the apartment across from the laundry room snap shut. It dawned on me that the tenant had heard the initial whacks, which sounded like gunshots. Then a few minutes later, they heard me say "What, you're still alive?" and four more gunshot sounds. God only knows what was going through their head, but at least the cops weren't called. I didn't want to end up in an episode of "Insecticide: Life on the Streets."