Banking on Disgust
Years ago, I had my own special strategy when I left valuables in my car. I kept a box of tampons in the console between the two front seats. If I had to leave money or jewelry in my vehicle, I would bury it in that box. If anyone wanted to steal from me, they would actually have to touch a tampon to do so.
Now these are unused tampons, of course, but from the faces I have spied on various male acquaintances when their significant others requested a “special pick up” from the grocery store, I was pretty confident the mere notion of a tampon would be deterrent enough.
I was banking on disgust.
A couple of months ago, when hiking Old Rag, our group of hikers ran into a dung beetle.
I was actually unaware that dung beetles lived in North America. I had thought they were only found in Africa, when in fact, they inhabit all the continents except Antartica. While reading to rectify my dung beetle misconceptions, I ran across a cute Aesop fable called THE DUNG BEETLE AND THE EAGLE.
Basically, a beetle got pretty darn miffed at an eagle for brutally devouring a hare. To retaliate, the beetle ransacked the eagle’s nest and destroyed all its eggs. The eagle made another nest, this one higher and safer. But never underestimate a grudge! The beetle found that as well and once again the eggs were destroyed. The next time, the eagle had to step up his game. Men are always having to protect their crotches from the likes of irate knees or toddlers with whiffleball bats. So what safer place could there be than the lap of the almighty Zeus himself?!?
So here’s this little beetle. If he wanted to destroy his nemesis’ eggs, he would have to take on the King of the Gods. The King of the Gods! He’s a tiny beetle!!! Zeus is HUGE, not to mention he has a whole arsenal of lightening bolts at his disposal! There was only one thing the beetle could do.
He banked on disgust. 🙂
…he stuffed himself with dung and went straight up to Zeus and flew right into his face. At the sight of this filthy creature, Zeus was startled and leaped to his feet, forgetting that he held the eagle’s eggs inside his lap. As a result, the eggs were broken once again.
— “THE DUNG BEETLE AND THE EAGLE” translated by Laura Gibbs
P.S. It’s all a happy ending, I suppose. I never had anyone infiltrate my tampon box and run off with my jewelry. Meanwhile, Zeus changed the eagle’s nesting season to when the beetle was harmlessly hibernating underground. The eagle’s eggs were safe for centuries. That is…until the beetle finally mastered DDT.