KING: Billy Bob’s carpenter bees for sale | Free sharing

I I haven’t told you about my alter ego, Billy Bob, in a long time. Part of this is likely due to Billy Bob being largely out of service during the coronavirus shutdown. Now that it’s getting better, old Billy Bob is back on the road.

As Billy Bob was relaxing on his back porch one late afternoon with a hot cup of coffee, he noticed an unusual sight. Under the railing of his porch he saw two or three little heaps of sawdust. When he looked up to see where the sawdust might have come from, he found a perfectly drilled hole about the size of his little finger above each pile. At first he suspected that his double first cousin, Booger Ray Bohannon, had slipped over there and drilled the holes just to annoy him. You know, Billy Bob likes to do woodwork, but he didn’t have a drill. He had used a hand drill to drill holes because it was too cheap to buy the more expensive drill. Booger Ray laughed at his cousin and called him a flatterer. Billy Bob thought the holes in his porch were just another way for Booger Ray to harass him. But then, to his great surprise, Billy Bob saw what he thought was a big bumblebee flying straight into one of those holes. Then the bee came out again, flew right in the face of old Billy Bob, and darted back and forth. Billy Bob braced himself for a sting, but it never happened and the bee flew away.

Later that week, Billy Bob attended Trade Day in Collinsville, Alabama. There he saw the strangest little birdhouses he had ever seen. When asked, the seller told him that these were not birdhouses, but carpenter bee traps. They had small wooden boxes with drill holes about ¼ inch in diameter on each side. A small mason jar hung under these boxes. The bees check in through the holes, fall into the jar and then cannot find their way out. Billy Bob thought, “This is about the same thing Booger Ray and his family do when they come to my house.”

Billy Bob learned that his boring visitors (the bees – not Booger Ray) were carpenter bees, not bumblebees. Then something very unusual happened … Billy Bob had a brilliant idea. Since he couldn’t afford a drill for his woodworking workshop and these carpenter bees are drilling perfectly shaped straight holes, he wondered if he could teach these bees to drill holes where he needed them. He started building bee traps to sell. He advertised them as living, wood-drilling drills! The only problem with this is that all of the holes were about the same size. Since woodworkers often have to drill holes of different sizes, Ole Billy Bob had the brilliant idea of ​​setting up some captured bees and feeding them for a while to fatten them. He thought this would allow them to drill bigger holes. You should have seen him try to measure the back of those bees … without getting stung.

What Billy Bob didn’t know is that not all carpenter bees sting. They drill holes in our exposed wood, but usually not so many that they cause structural damage. These big bad guys that fly in your face are men, but they just try to intimidate us. They cannot sting because only the females have a stinger and usually don’t sting. Most carpenter bees are harmless. The apostle Paul said that this is how death is for the Christian. It has no sting! (I Corinthians 15:55)

Bill King is a writer, musician, and a native of Rainsville. Visit for more.

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