But today... today, I saw this big guy crawling around on my colleague's desk:
That, my friends, is a stink bug, which we discovered after my friend smashed it, as I stood by for support. (My apologies, oh compassionate ones.) These bugs really do emit a potent stench. I was sort of shocked. I did not know that stink bugs, those highly invasive insects that certainly are a big problem in my home state of Pennsylvania, had migrated to Vermont.
I started to doubt our ID: the smashed bag was actually longer and leaner than the lil' stinkers you tend to see in pictures. (Oh why didn't I grab my iPhone for proper classification?) But one couldn't deny that malodor and later this evening, I found this Burlington Free Press bit about a stink bug sighting in Vermont. Should we be reporting today's run-in to Vermont's entomology authorities? (I'm kidding but not really ... your thoughts?)
And I can't help but worry (a mad skill of mine): Did I carry in this critter? My parents and sister were in for the holidays, from Pennsylvania. Was Mr. Stinky a stowaway, passing between us, from sweater to sweater? I'm itchy just thinking about it.