Me: 1, cockroach: 0

GAH! ewwww…ewwwww…ewwww…

So, I’m getting ready to go to work this morning, minding my own business, when i walk into the kitchen to get some breakfast before leaving. There, climbing slowly up my kitchen wall, happily poking at things with it’s feelers was a cockroach that was at LEAST an inch long, probably longer. I’m thinking roughly the size of my thumb - and I’m not exaggerating, it was the biggest roach I’ve ever seen in real life.

I froze, watching it explore for a minute. I then decided that, since the thought of squishing something that large and goo-filled turned my no-longer-growling stomach, I would catch it and flush it. Good plan, except that it was far above where I could reach.

I feel behind me for a gladware container, eyeing the offensive creature the whole time (I did NOT want it to get away).

In order to scare it down the wall a bit and closer to me (whoever thought somebody would want to bring a cockroach CLOSER?), I threw the gladware lid at it, and missed. It went further up the wall. I grabbed the nearest item, an empty egg container - SCORE! It came running down the wall, and I, holding the gladware in my hand, caught it! Still, as I held the gladware against the wall, I realized my dilema - how do I get the lid under it without letting it out at me? turns out, due to it’s size, that wasn’t really an issue. So, I slid the lid under it, plucked it off the wall and trotted to the bathroom, holding the vile thing as far away as possible. I dropped it into the toilet, afraid it was somehow going to come out at me instead, but no! Into the bowel it went, and scurried around underneath the seat for a moment, before I flushed and it met a water death.

I flushed a few more times just to be sure, then called my landlord to let him know of the invasion (they weren’t open, had to leave a message).

So, and doper cockroach advice? I’ve been trying to tell myself that it was a rogue cockroach, living a life of solitude in my apt, but from what I’ve heard of roaches, I doubt very my much my delusion is actually true.

I’ve lived in this apt. for two years, and have NEVER seen a roach in the building. My apartment is not dirty (the empty egg carton was for my gerbils - they like to chew stuff like that). I’m also moving out in about a month, and dont’ want to take any roaches with me when I do. I’m assuming the landlord will do something about this, but in the meantime - what do I do? I’m going to SCOUR my kitchen (and the rest of my house) when I get home, and also throw away any food that is not VERY well sealed or in the fridge/freezer. Anything specific I should do?

Sorry the story isn’t more graphic, but I was hung-over on three hours of sleep when all of this happened. Also, I threw away the gladware I caught the thing in - too bad it was still pretty new.

Only one inch long? Why, down here in Texas, we grow ‘em BIG! I’ve seen 3 inch long ones, and they fly! Hell, it would have caught that there egg carton and thrown it back at you! And while you were distracted, flown at you live a freakin’ dive bomber and gotten in your hair! Making you smash your head against the wall, trying to kill it, until you’re unconcious.

We’ve got some mean ones down here.

Three words: Bengal Roach Spray

:: wimpy Yankees ::

Tamara, just one roach? I really think you’re overreacting.

Once I figured out that the monster tree roaches down here don’t really infest houses and primarily live outside, I’ve almost taken a liking to the little buggers.

It has been my unfortunate experiance that it’s never just one roach. There’s always another. I’m old fashioned. I go for combat boots.

Yeah, I"m probably overreacting, but I still don’t want them in my house, unless they start paying rent. And I especially don’t want them moving with me to a new apartment!

It’s funny, I’m not at all squeamish about other bugs, but roaches for some reason give me the heeblie-jeeblies, bad. I’ll pick a spider up and let it run all over my hands so I can let it go outside, but roaches are nasty. Maybe that’s because they’re always associated with dirty apartments and squalor. Also, they’re so hard to kill…it’s eerie.

And this actually was the bigest one I’ve seen in real life - I see them on the streets sometimes, outside my apt building, and they’re still not as big as the one that actually decided to come inside.

Any advice on how to keep them from coming with me when I move? Assuming I haven’t managed to kill them all, that is.

I’d call an exterminator. I think the rule is that for every one you see, there’s 20 you don’t. If the thought of an exterminator seems a bit much, you can try looking for them yourself. Check under your sinks with a flash light, possible signs are mottled peppery looking spots on paint. Also check door cracks and crevises such as where the walls meet ceilings or floors.

On preview, I see you live in an apartment which is bad. Bombs and sprays tend to drive them to other apartments temporarily. The cleanliness of your place won’t address the problem if another tenant is a roach feeding slob. Your apartment manager should be required by law to handle this problem, but like I said getting rid of them in an apartment can be problematic. Combat bait traps can keep the population down, and under sinks is the best place for them also any place where you find signs of them.

To keep from accomodating them don’t do things like keeping stacks of old newspapers. Make sure your sink is clean and dry before retiring at night. Try sealling and obvious cracks in walls.

Now how do you prevent transporting them? This is what I did. We started with the clothes, washing each article at a Laudromat after checking the pockets and the like, the clean stuff should not be returned to the old place but to the new place. We packed a truck and used a bug bomb on the truck and letting the stuff sit over night. (Btw, I don’t know about the legality of that, nor did I care). It worked though.

Now for some good news. It’s entirely possible that this was one stray transported to your place hitching a ride in a purse or pocket.

That’s what I’m hoping for. I think, if it got in, it may have come in through a hold in my kitchen window screen, that window has been open basically all summer to keep it from getting way too hot in there. Plus, I’ve been living here for two years, and haven’t seen any at all - it seems unlikely that I see nothing, the all of a sudden this huge one shows up. Hell, I don’t even have mice, and I’ve always had mice at my Boston apts (I like the mice, though).

I looked a little this morning, but didn’t see anything unusual. I’ve been seeing them on the streets more often now, b/c of the warm, humid weather. Hopefully, it just came in on it’s own from outside.

I think that my landlord will call an exterminator - also, I can’t really afford one myself, and it’s one of those things that should be covered by him, anyway. After all, if there ARE many of them, and it’s not just a loner, he’d have to deal with them long after I’m gone anyway.

I checked to see if the laws are similar in your area as they are in mine and they are and here’s a link. Relavant section:

In my area the manager owner has 7 days to begin addressing the problem. Luckily for us, we were also moving within a month of first discovering them. There may also be a specific agency in your city which is resposible for leaning on your lanlord to make sure he in fact lives up to his obligations. I couldn’t find that on google for Boston, but you might try your Yellow Pages for “Vector Control”.

Hope that helps.

Thanks! He says he’ll be getting an exterminator to come in this weekend, if he can. I’ll be gone, but sounds good to me! He’s always been good about that kind of thing, getting repairs done right away and such. He owns a few buildings, and I’m sure the he won’t want roaches in and of them.

Oh, bad childhood memories. When I was 14 I went with a friend to Atlanta to see his mom. I would have sworn the house was built on a radioactive dump. The dog didn’t even mess with those friggin’ things!

Gah! GAH!! I was fine with this story until you said that. Now I’m going to be giving myself the willies every time I go for my car keys, thank you very much.


There’s only one way to rid a home of such a depraved and dangerous beast as the Inch Long And Probably Longer Roughly Thumb Sized Roach:

A Mongoose.

Amen. A-heyheyhey-men.