|Cue: "Let's Get It On" by Marvin Gaye|
- The holes: In the weeks prior to their surfacing, 1 cm holes start appearing everywhere. The impression I'm left with is one of a drunk groundskeeper who decided to pass out while running the core aerator around the bases of trees.
- The emergence: The first few days are characterized by "Cool!" reactions as the small (3-4 cm) red-eyed bugs start climbing trees, having shed their amber skins
- The SWARM: And then one day you wake up, open the front door, and you're staring at 30-50 red-eyed invaders, all patiently waiting for their wings to dry and harden so they can fly away. Sound creepy? It is.
- The noise: I really wish I could describe the dawn-to-dusk humming of the cicadas as the brood builds up to peak numbers. It starts out as a "gee, what is that", followed by a realization of the source, followed by some quick internet searching that reveals the noise will persist for 2-3 more weeks.
- The humor: Brood 2 cicadas will never be lauded for their flight precision. I never lost interest in seeing the initial flight trajectory as they take off from some grand height, headed towards a remote branch, and imagining a tiny voice saying "oh crap oh crap Oh Crap Oh Crap OH CRAP OH" as it crash-landed in the grass.
- The horror: Little known fact - cicadas suffer from a fungal attacker that literally eats them from the inside out. If you saw cicadas covered with a white dusting, chances are they were busy infecting their brood-mates prior to dropping their crunchy remains on your driveway.
- The aftermath: And months later, we're still finding larval and adult shells everywhere. They're on the house, in trees, in the grass, in the engine-hood gaps of your car, in your potted plants. Did I mention that we're still finding them EVERYWHERE?