Worker ants! I have released a level four food alarm pheromone, so gather up! Word has come in from one of our scouts that a small group of humans is picnicking a few meters due west of our current position. While these Sunday lunchers are clearly within our territory, you know as well as I that the red ants will gladly seize the opportunity to plunder the picnic for themselves if we do not act now, so time is of the essence. Luckily for us, the humans aren’t yet aware of our presence, giving us the advantage of being able to stage a surprise attack.
The picnic blanket is laid out into four distinct quadrants. The first, in the northeast corner, is composed primarily of hors d’ouevres- crackers, various cheeses, and pitted olives. There will most likely be enough crumbs to feed the entire colony, but do not let these easy spoils of war distract you. A crumb may be able to feed you and your closest kinsmen for a few days, but if we exercise restraint, we may be able to rest tonight with larders full enough to last through the coming winter. The second quadrant, in the southeast corner, is rumored to be mostly side dishes. This is where you will find the potato salad, cole slaw, corn chips, cheese puffs, and pretzels. If you get separated from the rest of the pack, avoid this area. Once they begin to eat, there will most likely be a flurry of human activity in this region, particularly around the bags of chips. We do not want some human who just needs a few chips with his sandwich to see some lollygagging ant strolling by the pretzels and blow the alarm on us all. Any individual found doing so will be censured, and then beaten about the thorax with stiff blades of grass. I mean it.
The remaining two quadrants are what interest us the most- the sandwiches and desserts. These are where we shall concentrate the whole of our forces. Our scout has reported that there is an oversized submarine sandwich in the northwest and scads of cookies and cupcakes in the southwest. Now, the humans will be expecting us to go after the cookies and cupcakes first- so we will not. Or, at least, we won’t let them think that we will. I am going to split you into two attacking forces that shall flank the western half of the picnic blanket to the north and south. The first squad, which will be significantly smaller than the second, shall make a direct attack on the oversized submarine sandwich. Do not attempt to be stealthy about this, as it is of the utmost importance that the humans see you- we want them to think that we are concentrating our attack from the north. Crawl upon their hands and legs if you must, but see to it that each of you is noticed. If you can make your numbers appear double or triple what they actually are, then half the battle is already won.
While our first squad has the humans distracted, our main force shall come in stealthily from the south and lay into the desserts. If my calculations are correct, a team of fifteen ants ought to be sufficient to carry away a cookie, and thirty ought to suffice for a cupcake. There will be several hundred of us, so if we work smart we ought to make out like bandits. Once we abscond with the sweets, the humans will surely notice us. Hopefully, they will not try to salvage any desserts we have already taken, but they will certainly prevent us from grabbing more. First squad, this is when you shine. The humans’ attentions will have been diverted towards us in the south, leaving you free in the north to carry away sandwich crusts and scraps of lunchmeat. At this point, if you are not already in a primary team helping to carry home a larger food item, then grab whatever you can from the hors d’ouevres and the sides and hurry back to the colony. The humans won’t know what hit them.
Now go! We have wasted precious time here already, and the red ants may have already begun to take the food that is rightfully ours. Go forth, worker ants! Go forth and steal every last morsel you can find. Remember, your survival as an individual pales in comparison to the survival of the colony, so be not afraid to sacrifice yourself for its glory. Now, let us apart without further ado and turn the humans’ idyllic luncheon into a smorgasbord- for ants!
Thanks to Alex Berg, soon to be famous comedian, for letting us use this old post of his. You can follow Alex on Twitter at @ActuallyBerg or go to the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre in LA where you can see him in person on Thursdays in Convoy, Saturdays in Sentimental Lady and sometimes you can even take a class from him.
Mirth in a Box sells fun custom gift boxes and gifts. We have some great summer time boxes that would be great to send to someone at camp such as: SuperHappyFun Camper, Take it Outside and Simply Silly.