After a summer of being a quiet background hum, this week the cicadas cranked up their volume to eleven. That probably means they have doubled their population and are now invading homes, like a bad horror movie. I like to believe that they are just telling us goodbye as they vanish for the winter. I am not a fan of the cicadas and their alien singing. Doug thinks they are groovy. He likes to open the windows and listen to them. It feels me like a white noise machine has broken inside my head. My mother likes to pick the cicadas up and wax poetic about them. This is clearly insanity she suffered from being part of a generation that wore bug themed jewelry. I could run screaming whenever she did that when I was a child. Now, she’s showing the nasty bugs to my children and I have to feign interest so that I don’t inflict my “issues” on the children. “Oh, it’s so very, um . . . shiny.” I have never been anywhere near New York and must therefore base my knowledge of New Yorkers on movies and television. With that excellent wisdom, I am guessing that there are no New Yorkers in East TN right now. If there was, I would hear them screaming at the cicadas. Probably in Italian. Instead, all I hear is that eardrum piercing whistle. One of our neighbors likes to throw firecrackers at birds to keep them out of his garden. I wonder if smoke bombs would make the cicadas go away. Or at least make them be quiet.