Debugging ourselves. By Sue Langenberg Our computers have come alive these days with viruses, bugs and worms to worry about. So when someone talks about debugging, the last thing you think of is ridding yourself of something that actually flies around your head and gives you the creeps. But here we are mid-summer and I just realized that I could count the times on one hand that I could sit outside with coffee in the morning without turning into a swatting machine. In five minutes, I am driven inside and feel like the same shut-in during blizzards in the winter. This morning was one of those episodes. Gee, what a nice breeze, I think I’ll have my coffee out here. The entire army of flying things on the block suddenly heard me move my chair into position. They rose up, took orders from Sergeant Gnat in Charge and headed straight for me. I turned into the same swat machine as other seemingly pleasant mornings. I think that it’s a conspiracy. For some reason, I am the only person in the world whose bloodstream has successfully evolved into flowing chocolate cake with Tollhouse cookie dough throughout. No gnat or mosquito within 500 miles can resist. So when I saw a man at the park walking around with his own private mosquito net, I knew that I wasn’t the only victim. Yet there are those who seem not to be bothered by flying things. My daughter sits right next to her husband in the middle of a mosquito war and is carried away whole like fresh meat while my son-in-law barely notices that she is missing. He claims it’s because she has wine in her blood stream and she claims that mosquitoes don’t like the smell of his farm chores. Either way, mosquitoes seem to have varying tastes in blood streams. Chocolate cake and cookie dough are always Grade A prime on the menu. I have attempted several sprays to offset attacks, and no matter what, the mosquitoes think that poison icing on the hag cake is the blue-plate special for the day. I also do not relish the idea of poisoning myself just to sit outside a few minutes. The Citronella candle has the same failure rate and sprays; gnats socialize around my head and drink it from wine stems. I noticed an online household hint the other day that suggested Listerine, ala mouth rinse, to sprinkle on exposed areas. So far, I’m hedging on that one because I worry that the entire Gnat and Mosquito Brigade would suddenly develop an evolution of personal taste and lust for gleaming teeth and dental perfection. One toothy smile and you’re dead. The idea is nevertheless intriguing, however, because it would be cheaper and less hazardous to your health. The household hints nevertheless are intriguing. A friend once learned that beer might make a good shampoo rinse. When she showed up at a ballgame, however, she realized that she should have worn a bucket over her head because she smelled like a brewery. I tried the home recipe for glass cleaner and must have added too much vinegar because my mirrors pursed their frames inward with a chilly wince. But back to debugging. I am now seeking a new invention, aside from attaching 18 flyswatters around my head. Or inventing an injection to make my bloodstream seem like a distasteful flow of kitchen knives. I am inclined to think at this point that perhaps the computers really have become alive to buzz around our heads with annoying valor. Maybe the real answer is to call the techie geek and see what his remedy is. He’ll probably take a flyswatter to my computer.