The Truth About Bees

2 Feb

When I was a child, I hated bees. Upon reflection, it was down to one incident, and it really wasn’t their fault. I was super excited to be spending the day in the local children’s Lido with friends and my Mum, and I was pigtailed up and ready to dive into the action in my new frilly swimsuit. So ready, in fact that I didn’t notice the bee that was drowning at the side of the pool. In its dying breaths, it obviously saw my gargantuan four year old foot coming towards it from the sky, and stuck its stinger up in a final bid for its life. I screamed as the sting pierced my skin, and it took my Mum ages to calm me down and get in the pool. I was afraid of water as a child, and convinced that the pain in my foot had something to do with the water.

From that moment on, I hated anything yellow, black and stripy. My mum tried to explain to me that there was a difference between bees and wasps; that bees were bumbling and rounder and were often like people searching for lost keys or running late for a meeting. They didn’t mean any harm, and if they stung you it was to protect themselves, but it was just as bad for you as it was for them, as they lost their sting, and died. I never really understood how stinging was a protection of their life however, as they died as soon as their sting penetrated your skin.

Wasps on the other hand were meaner; a kind of slimmer, snippier creature, like my biology teacher at school. Never far from children being happy, you would hear her shout “MissssssssTinker!” and knew you were in trouble. They stung left right and centre as it meant nothing to them. There was a distinct difference.

And then when I was in senior school a boy swore that he had been stung by a hornet. By this time I was a bit more rational and would merely flap when the little critters came near me (to cries from my father of “Its more scared of you than you are of it!” what a parent thing to say) but the idea of a new super bug, the hornet, that was fabled to be the size of my head and would sting me repeatedly like a shot gun, only stopping for more ammunition, was a fear to be contended with. Mum argued the point “there are no such thing!” oh yes there are, I replied after looking on Encarta (those were the days!) “Well they aren’t indigenous to this country!” was the retort. I wasn’t convinced.

As the years have gone past I have become less scared of the black and yellow insects, and now will sit still when they fly around me, or merely sweep them with a magazine. One friend is certain that you must not kill them as they call their friends with their dying breaths; whether this is true or not I don’t like killing them for the sake of things, it seems a little unfair.

But I’m still not convinced that there is much point of a wasp.

What are you scared of?


21 Responses to “The Truth About Bees”

  1. forsythkid February 2, 2012 at 10:52 am #

    The only insect that really scares me is the yellow jacket – a mean little critter whose stinger packs a real wallop! Add to that that they are very territorial and will go after anyone who invades their space.

  2. Dazzle Rebel February 2, 2012 at 11:03 am #

    Garlic. Since eating a whole bulb of it and stinking for two weeks its given me food anxiety issues!

  3. prenin February 2, 2012 at 12:34 pm #

    I have Paranoid Schizophrenia so I’m terrified of kids, especially teenagers!!!

    Not that I don’t have reason having been victimised for two and a half years by the Mallinsons and being held at knifepoint and gunpoint!!!

    Crazy world…

    Oh yeah – Hornets DO exist in this country – they are about twice the size of a wasp and MEAN!!!

    Love and hugs!


  4. gojulesgo February 2, 2012 at 1:41 pm #

    Sort of similar, I hate scorpions! Though I’ve never been stung by one, thank GOD. I’ve probably managed to mention that to you before, LOL Long story, but rest assured I’ll never live in a place where there are scorpions. (I DID babysit for a family with a pet scorpion…can you believe it? My biggest fear, and there it was, in a cage by the TV. Huge, black, sinister… I sent it so many evil thoughts that it dropped dead eventually. True story.)

  5. Richard Wiseman February 2, 2012 at 1:46 pm #

    I’m scared of snakes. I lived as a child in El Salvador and as a teenager in Singapore. I’ve been 3 feet from a spitting cobra, out in the open. A friend and I shared a house for a while in the 1990’s and he got a python because he fancied the girl at the pet store. He didn’t know what to do with it and in the end it was me that fed it and got it out for him to handle. I was terrified, but then I knew it wasn’t poisonous so I ‘manned up’ and got on with dealing with it. My instinct is to kill anything I’m afraid of. So it was a bit unfortunate for the slow worm our cat brought into the house and let slither across my foot. Horrified at seeing what looked to me like a grey poisonous snake I went and got a carving knife and cut it in half with an overzealous blow, I’d have to say. The cat gave me a ‘you always spoil my fun’ look and the kids went mad saying it was just a slow worm and didn’t I know they weren’t poisonous or bad. We buried it with ceremony. My inner child psyche is still filled with dire warnings from my Salvadoranian nanny about staying away from snakes and spiders; so if it it slithers, has a rounded or arrow head and it’s near me it’s going to die!

  6. twindaddy February 2, 2012 at 1:58 pm #

    I fear losing those I love. My mind always conceives some bizarre tragedy when something out of the ordinary happens. In the end, things are always just fine, but still my mind wanders to terrible non-realities nonetheless.

  7. The Byronic Man February 2, 2012 at 2:18 pm #

    Bees are dying so rapidly that I’ve become some kind of bee-advocate. It’s not an easy position to defend.

    As a kid I was terrified of skeletons that would come to life. I used to be afraid of tarantulas, so I made myself hold one to see that they’re actually pretty cool.

  8. susielindau February 2, 2012 at 3:20 pm #

    I collected bees one summer with the sole purpose of having them produce honey for me. Imagine my shock when the myriad of bees never did anything but buzz!!

  9. Marvin the Martian February 2, 2012 at 4:11 pm #

    Killer bees don’t die when they sting you. They just keep swarming and stinging and swarming and stinging. That’s why they’re so deadly. And they are becoming more and more widespread as they hybridize with local bees. Most bees in North America have interbred with killer bees.

    Most animals and insects frighten me. I don’t mind watching them from a distance, but I don’t like to get close to them. Especially if they’re unpredictable, or “killer” anything.

  10. Deano February 2, 2012 at 5:02 pm #

    I only fear the Honey Badger!

  11. nelle February 2, 2012 at 7:22 pm #

    Fool wasps like to nest in the ground, and I’ve tangled with them more than once. As a young child, they chased me a quarter mile, all the way back home, four of the flying javelins spearing me en route.

    Hornets we have, but while they buzz around, they don’t usually bother unless you bother them.

    A couple of decades ago, my ex’s aunt found a nest on a tree in midwinter. She thought it neat, this 15 inch high intact nest, and brought it home.

    Do not bring hornet’s nests you find in winter home with you. 🙂

  12. drewpan February 3, 2012 at 3:34 am #

    My wife is scared of anything that flies, including butterflies!

    What’s weird is that she’s not afraid of roaches when they’re crawling on the ground… but the moment they take to the air, she’ll run off screaming!

  13. Roshni February 3, 2012 at 7:36 am #

    I totally understand your fear or dislike towards bees. I have a similar fear of cockroaches. I know it sounds childish but I’m super-scared of them…(same goes for spiders, worms and the like!!) I have yet to figure out why this started off, in the first place!! 🙂

  14. jakennicksmomma February 3, 2012 at 9:05 pm #

    Encarta…love it!

  15. Sandra Bell Kirchman February 3, 2012 at 10:46 pm #

    Spiders and any insect longer than my thumb will scare the behoosis out of me. Snakes make me scream, and I won’t go into the effect that scorpions and tarantulas have on me. Basically, I guess, I am super wary of all the creepy crawly things. I don’t even care much for flies, although they are more annoying than frightening. Let’s not even get close to the subject of mosquitoes, since they were put on this earth to cause misery to people who are allergic to their sting. Good post, Belle 🙂

  16. jannatwrites February 4, 2012 at 6:37 am #

    It might be easier to say what I’m not afraid of 🙂 Snakes, scorpions, wasps, spiders, you name it, I fear it.

  17. BROOKEandMCKENZIE February 4, 2012 at 7:07 am #

    I’m terrified of grasshoppers. Spiders I don’t mind, even some insects but grasshoppers just freak me out, ever since I was a kid one landed on me and it scarred me for life!!

  18. artjen1971 February 4, 2012 at 12:57 pm #

    What a cute way for mom to describe bees! I love it!
    Roaches freak me out to no end!

  19. mario February 4, 2012 at 5:38 pm #

    Spiders bring out my inner girl.


  1. The Secret to my Fear « Roshrulez's Weblog - February 4, 2012

    […] day, I was reading a post (The Truth About Bees) in Tinkerbelle’s blog (it’s my top fav blog; do check it out when you can, […]

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