If you've been following me on the Twitter, you've probably seen my semi-obsessive tweets about cicadas. I love the little buggers. Brood XIX is full upon us in the Southern United States, and there is considerable cicada craze happening! "Cicadas have prominent eyes set wide apart on the sides of the head, short antennae protruding between or in front of the eyes, and membranous front wings. Also, commonly overlooked, cicadas have three small eyes, or ocelli, located on the top of the head between the two large eyes that match the colour of the large eyes." -- or so says the always accurate Wikipedia page. They simply swarm buildings, trees, and everything outside with they beady red eyes and black bodies. They are so loud is some areas that you can't hear your car radio if you're driving. They get spooked if you walk too close and will inevitably fly into you and then be mad that you were in their way. So why do I have affection for them? First, they're a rarity. The seventeen year cicadas didn't really ever appear when I was living in Chicago, so it's been since I was a youngin since the last time I experienced the Brood XIX.
Second, they leave their shells glistening on trees, walls and any surface they can. I remember as a kid, collecting these shells and trying to get the biggest ones with my sister. I haven't found any stellar ones yet this year, but I do have a small collection again. I like nature.
Third, and most importantly, they're like really terrible super villains. They have superiority in numbers, they have red, glowing evil eyes, and they can drown out any other sound if they try. But they are super clumsy at climbing, flying, and basically anything. So even if they tried to make an attack, likely half of them would fly the wrong way, or into one another, or just fall on the ground and buzz angrily about it. All intent on world domination, but just so bad at it it's kind of cute.
There actually is a minor supervillain in the DC Universe called Cicada, but he really just sucks life out of other people, which is decidedly not as good if he was a Kafka-esque Metamorphosis charater.
There are plenty of ways to share your own cicada love or loathing:
This Cicada Wing shirt is lovely. Also, the man modeling. Yum. By Neon Analog
Mad Art Jewelry shop has a whole series of cicada rings and necklaces in a variety of metals to show your cicada connection.
If actually wearing dead things is more your style, check out Forgotton Things for dead bug jewelry.
If you're feeling a little dirty, clean up with cicada soap from KcSoapsNmore.
From the description: "Flying, Armored Zombie Bugs have been sleeping beneath the hallowed ground of Music City USA...This is THEIR Year To Arise, BUZZ, Mate, Lay Eggs, Crash & Die!!!" -What more do you want from a print? By the local NashArt.
If you've got little ones, get them this awesome cicada shell shirt. Although I would really like an adult sized one for me too, Typsy Gypsy Tees.
Some people, not I, eat cicadas. If you're inclined, here are some recipes.
Also, some people like to wear the shells in their hair.