Redeeming the Neighborhood, Killing Cockroaches One by One

I’ve had my share of encounters with cockroaches.  When I lived in the Bronx while attending Fordham University I lived on the 13th floor of a 26 story building, and it was infested with roaches.  My sister didn’t like me bringing clothes to her house to wash because there was always a good chance I had some hitchhikers in tow.  My roomate at that time often left peanut butter jars open on the counter, and if I came out at night I’d turn on the light and they’d scatter from the jar– like cockroaches.  (I never borrowed peanut butter from him)

When I first got to Omaha, I bought a house which had an apartment on the upper floor.  Some guys were living upstairs.  I would sometimes notice that a roach was coming down from my ceiling along the wall into my first floor space, and so when the guys moved out, I expected the apartment to be dirty.  When I went up the afternoon they moved out, I was happily surprised to find that they had cleaned all their stuff out (although the kitchen needed a good cleaning). 

I went upstairs to that empty apartment around 8 pm that night to start cleaning, and when I turned on the light in the kitchen, I realized the walls, ceiling and floor were all moving– I couldn’t walk without crunching them.  I went down the street to the corner store, bought 4 cans of spray and a bunch of bait, and had a half-hour seek and destroy merciless bloodbath, using my weapons of mass destruction.  I had to return multiple times daily for a couple weeks, but in the end, I completely ridded the apartment (and my house) of roaches.

When I started buying old property in our neighborhood, I got a lot of buildings which had been ‘let go’ for some time.  I remember once helping a couple move out and moving their couch, only to see a couch-shaped swarm of roaches behind it.  I remember once moving out a fridge in an apartment which was not in good shape, and realizing that the entire fridge was crawling with cockroaches (they love appliances like TVs, Fridges, and delicious greasy stoves). 

I recently took over a building which had a tennant in the basement who didn’t seem to mind roaches.  The other tennants tell me now that when he moved in, the roaches came, and they fought a constant battle.  When I went into that empty apartment, it was full of life– little roaches everywhere.  I bug-bombed it 4 times in two days, and sprayed extensively, and used high-octane amonia (which burns your lungs if you breathe it in) on all the floors and walls and in the drains.  I estimate that we killed around 400-500 cockroaches in that apartment. 

I believe that every creature has a virtue associated with it (at least one) and the virtue of the roach is tenacity.  It is said that they would survive a nuclear hollocaust, although I don’t know if that is really true.  I don’t mind these situations anymore because I have seen success in the past, and so it is easier for me to hope because I know what can be.  This is looking at the current situation with eyes of faith.  Without that faith, and without some knowledge of how to get rid of roaches, the situation is hopeless. 

When I am killing roaches, I am not thinking about killing roaches, but about making a building a great home again.  I think about making the other tennants proud again of the place that they live.  I think about the future tennants and how cool we can make this place so that it is once again a place of peace and rest and beauty.  I think about stabilizing the neighborhood, helping those who are just trying to have a nice quiet apartment with no trouble to have a decent building where they can trust their neighbors.  When you start to think of all those things, killing roaches becomes a lot less traumatic.  Its the dirty underbelly of neighborhood transformation, but it is essential, and I like doing it!

This particular apartment complex has a second problem, and that is, that when the management asked the person with all the cockroaches to leave, they decided to spraypaint the vacant apartment next door.  I got the bright red spraypaint off the counters and toilet and bathroom tile and dishwasher and I think it will come off the linoleum as well.  Again, the cleanup is the hard part– but it is rewarding in the end…  I talked to the tennants who remain and they are really excited that we are cleaning up the place, exterminating the cockroaches, and turning this place around.  These people want to be proud of their apartment, and to feel proud when their friends visit.  We plan to help make that happen. 

May God have mercy on us all (but no mercy for the cockroaches in this apartment!)

http://www.uri.edu/ce/factsheets/sheets/cockroaches.html

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8 responses to “Redeeming the Neighborhood, Killing Cockroaches One by One

  1. You can easily pick up the glue board and discard it outside your
    home. A small litter of trash bags, or improperly disposed of
    compost will attract cockroacches very quickly.

    Eradicate, on the other hand, has a different etymological history.

  2. We thought it was just what we needed, until we saw the pricing.
    When fighting with roaches, many people prefer using aerosols.
    Dogs commonly get hookworms, tapeworms and roundworms.

  3. They mature rapidly and can reproduce and can pollute a home in a very short time.
    Introduce beneficial insects such as ladybugs, lacewigs, hover flies, paper wasps and praying
    mantises into your garden. It can be a challenge though when you’re in an apartment because no matter how clean you
    are, your neighbors may be dirty.

  4. Well, I really doubt roach eggs can survive long time outside theeir hive, but I do agree
    clean the scene immediately and thoroughly
    would be wise to help prevent health issues. I have been trying hard to get ridd of roaches ever since I started my
    family. Onnly place bait paste outside of containers if you are sure a pet won’t eatt it or hazve access to
    the places you place the bait.

  5. Signs and symptoms of an insect bite result from the injection of venom or
    other substances into your skin. Think of a
    pest infestation as some ubiquitous process that takes
    root in the home, taking advantage of some weakness in the house or home structure.
    Thirdly, take a walk in your compound and try to examine the surrounding area.

  6. Remove lumber, firewood, or other debris from around the walls
    of your home to keep the roaches from inhibiting themselves in the crevices.

    Therefore, it is wiser for heath as well as property to take a
    serious step to prevent them. Rodent pesticide can be harmful to people or pets
    if utilized improperly.

  7. The source of new roaches and addition to the ˜
    residents” may be ongoing”from a nearby building, or from vehicles carrying food and water from contaminated or infested areas. Update: I noticed recently that Combat sells covered gel baits called Source Kill that attract roachss and kill them off over time using the exact same idea Billy used. Once cockroaches take over your home or yard it can be difficult to get rid of them.

  8. Pay attention to keep yur kitchen tidy and
    make it a clean place by vacuuming or moppkng away dirt.
    Making the home hospitable and welcoming to them with food and debris laying
    around will only make them think that they are acceptable house
    guests. Theey can cause intense itching, allergic contact dermatitis and rashes.

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