Jun. 7: Ants-b-gone

exterminatorWe have ants. Just a few, and they’re those little teeny ants, but that doesn’t make it any less icky. There is small comfort in the following:

  • I have not found ants anywhere in our house but-cept for the kitchen
  • I have not found ants in our food
  • I have not eaten any (I hope)

Where’d they come from? I blame the big dog. Recently she briefly stopped digging outside to put her paw in my coffee; when she finished stirring it, there was a little ant doing the backstroke in there. Ergo, Lucy’s fault.

(Oooh, I kinda liked using “ergo” in that thar sentence up yonder. I think this usage of “ergo” might be a first for Stuff Jen Says.)

We got ant killing spray and take-it-back-to-their-nest-goo traps but the ants keep coming back. In the past week I’ve smashed, like, six of them every day. I know; it’s far from an infestation here at the House of Manullang, but still. Yuck. So yesterday I got on the ‘net to find out what repellent or poison or whatever I should use to make the ants leave our kitchen. Here’s what I found: [insert glorious sound of the heavens here] BLUE DAWN LIQUID DISHWASHING SOAP is the answer. It must be Dawn, and it must be blue. The ants hate it.

Supposedly even a residue of a blue Dawn and water mixture will keep ants away, so I figgered I’d not only spray the kitchen countertops, I’d wash every item in the kitchen with blue Dawn and that would increase the chances of this whole effort being effective. Smart, no?

Slowly and methodically, I cleaned every item in the kitchen with blue Dawn and put it back in place. Once I got into the cleaning groove, I enlisted the help of more cleaning products. I used a razor blade to scrape wax off the window and tile where Jack exuberantly extinguished a candle. I ran vinegar through the coffee maker five times to make that “cleaning required” light finally go off (full disclosure: it wasn’t so much the vinegar as—heh heh heh—I might have broken the light). I thoroughly washed all the windows. I scoured the stovetop with baking soda. I scrubbed every inch of the top half of our kitchen. In the end, the room was spotless. I was filthy, but everything else was OCD-clean.

And then I saw a little mofo ant walking along the edge of the sink.

[Insert the curse heard ‘round the world here.]

All ninja-like, I sprayed the ant with the blue Dawn/water combo and ffffzzzzt. Dead.

It. Was. Awesome.

Sure, I was irritated that after all that work, the blue Dawn residue didn’t seem to be repelling the ants, but it was all kinds of powerful cool to have something so immediately effective in the spray bottle. I might have maybe possibly kinda turned into James Bond for a minute. Or maybe Charles Manson, just bat- ant-shit crazy. Whatever; if there was a black speck that even slightly moved, it got sprayed.


I found two ants checking out the sink this morning. They were probably looking for their friends who never came back from hunting yesterday. Ha! Those ants are extry-clean now. All day I’ve been checking the counters for more and I actually squeal a little when I see one—more ffffzzzzt! Wheeee! I don’t like having ants, not even a little bit, but OMG, I sure do like spraying ‘em.

Now, what we know about ant behavior is that the rest of the ants will hear about the carnage in our house and move on to another one, right? Or will they develop new skills and advance above me in the food chain? I really don’t know how ants work.

This extermination thing may not be going like I planned, but it is going well. The twitching, muttering, foaming, slightly blue girl in the mirror says so.



  1. Kill an ant, and 100 more come to it's funeral.

  2. We did borax mixed with jelly on a paper plate on the kitchen counter this year. The ants came to devour and then went home to poison all their relatives. For extra measure we did that spraying the outside of the house thing, too. But the Death by Spray Bottle does sound like fun, I'll have to remember that.

  3. I know that it's is not it's, it's its. Don't judge me!

    1. Deanna! To suggest that I am that judge-y! I'm hurt and offended and WOW, you know me too well. ;) xoxo


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