Insectoid Horror

One of the most horrifying things I was exposed to in college (aside from the ordinary horrors like unrequited love and having to maintain a 3.5 GPA) was a disgusting kind of insect-looking THING which I frequently saw on one of the walkways around campus. Imagine, if you will, a hornet, with no wings and no stinger, but pale, like a grub. Two inches long or so.
Now imagine, if you will, coming upon this thing at NIGHT, while it wriggles futilely on the cement before you.
I’ll wait while you get your stomach churning under control.
Well, I encountered them regularly for all four years I was at college. I never figured out what they were because I tried to pretend they didn’t exist (as much as you can do that while muttering “ew ew ew!” and carefully not stepping on them, anyway).
Today, however, I tracked them down.
Potato bugs. Also known as Jerusalem crickets. Here, for the brave and the strong of stomach, is a link to a photo taken in Valencia, LA, not toooooo far from where I went to school. DO NOT CLICK THIS FOR THE LOVE OF GOD!
The ones I saw were paler than that, and smaller. Possibly immature ones?
I have now seen enough photos of potato bugs to hold me for life, thank you. The one good thing to come out of this (aside from the pleasure of knowing wtf to call those monstrosities) is that I found this hilarious FAQ (no photos on that page, but the rest of the site has more pix) about them. A must-read.

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