catch-and-release cricket

We are fortunate enough to have very few problems with pests in our home, so we opt not to call in the chemical guy with the big guns in the interest of preserving a healthy environment for all and our children's reproductive freedoms...and stuff like that. We do, from time to time, provide shelter to a cricket or two (and, yes, I realize a thousand more in the walls, but I don't see them), especially during the monsoon season, when they'd like to get out of the rain for a spell, as would any rational being. So tonight I'm in the bathroom just after tucking the littles in, and I see the tiniest little thing on the tile floor. It's a baby cricket! Adorable (yes, I realize this means they are multiplying)! I roused the littles out of their almost-slumber.

"You have to see this baby-cricket-cutest-thing-EVER!" I said.

Truly, they were impressed and wanted to keep it for a pet. I did, too. But, truthfully, I have never pet-sat for a cricket (I have fed them to other charges, though). So I wouldn't know how to care for one. Not knowing how to care for a creature leaves it out of the pet category, and I feared it might perish before I could do sufficient research. I opted for the catch-and-release.

It was easy enough to do a gentle scoop into my hands, and I tossed the little guy out the bedroom door into the back yard ("garden," for my has grass and flowers).

"Bye, crickey!" bellowed the littles.

"But, Mommy?" Po questioned. "You tossed him from pretty high up, like if we were jumping off the Empire State Building, and I think that wasn't very nice and it might have hurt him."

"Oh, baby," I responded, "I totally get why you would think that, and you're right. For his body size, it was a really high toss. But bugs can do some crazy sky diving tricks, so I know he's okay."

Po contemplated. "But he didn't have a parachute."

I rolled my eyes at my own stupidity, as I often do when my children call me out. "Very true, but I know he's okay. You have to ask Daddy why, because I don't know about the physics and all of that, but I promise crickey landed softly and he'll be just fine."

Long live crickey. And a lesson for me about insect physics is in store.