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My family’s experience with scorpions began the first night we moved to Arizona when my elderly mother flew out of her room, hot to strangle me and yelling about a scorpion on her wall. Of course, the kids had to go look and, in all the commotion, it darted into a bookcase and disappeared. For the next several days I’d wake up in the middle of the night to find one of my kids climbing into bed, frightened because “the scorpion was going to get them.”
Rather than endure any more sleepless nights as their arachnophobia tapered off, I decided to tackle the problem head-on by stopping at the hardware store on my way home from work where I picked up a couple of black light flashlights.
“Kids, we’re going scorpion hunting,” I announced as I walked through the door that evening.
The looks on their faces at that moment were priceless, but I’m happy to say that my ploy worked. The idea of scorpions glowing a bright jade color in the black light caused curiosity to overwhelm caution while the excitement and very real danger of stomping around the desert at night was more than they could resist. Armed with only with our lights, an empty red SOLO cup and a set of chopsticks, we snatched four with a deftness that would make Mr. Miyagi proud.
Scorpions do sting, but unless you have a violent allergic reaction, probably won’t kill you. Even so, we took the precaution of nipping off the stingers before bringing them into the house.
I don’t think eating scorpions crossed their minds when the kids asked what we were going to do with them, but that was the plan. Dredged in flour and lightly seasoned with herb and garlic, fried scorpion tastes much like soft shell crab. It won’t be a weekly dish, but my kids now have great sport freaking out their friends during sleepovers with this shocking late night snack.