August 17th, 2006


Die, ants! Die!

Yesterday evening, miss_chance discovered a stream of tiny ants helping themselves to our cat's food bowl. We couldn't really tell if the cat was unhappy about this. She meows a lot under the best of circumstances and often wants company while she eats, but on the theory that a) she doesn't need the extra protein, b) the ants might, in fact, bother her and c) we certainly aren't excited about ants, m_c cleaned up the ants and gave kitty a new plate for food.

Naturally enough, later in the evening, the ants were all over the new plate, too. Now, of course we don't want to put some kind of poison next to, on or around our cat's food, but I know that cinnamon oil is an effective ant deterrent... but I have no cinnamon oil at the moment, so I figured I'd try regular old ground cinnamon and see how that does.

It does very well, but, of course, you have to surround the food supply, not just one access point to it. Okay, so another new plate later is now sitting on a small pile of cinnamon. Great.

Now, the ants can't get to the cat food, but the cat seems not to appreciate the strong scent of cinnamon seasoning her food. She's giving me that look that says, "Hey, bitch, what gives?" And you know when a cat calls you "bitch" it's not a compliment.

So I figured I'd try something different: around the bottom of the bowl, just near where it touches the floor, I traced a line of cooking oil, onto which I then sprinkled cinnamon. Now, hours later, there is less food in the bowl, making me think kitty is putting up with the lighter seasoning of cinnamon, and there are no ants at all, making me think my experiment is a success!
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Poll #797894 What's average?

When someone talks about "average", I...

assume they mean "mean"
assume they mean "median"
assume they mean "mode"
wonder what they mean
suspect they don't know what they mean
get grouchy at their lack of specificity
other (describe below)