Okay, this is creepy weird…

But typical of surprises in New Mexico…

So what I thought was an albino praying mantis showed up on my new hand-cranked chile roaster after I had completed roasting half a burlap sack of Big Jim chile and a smaller batch of Sandia chile.

After searching the internet, I determined that it’s really not an albino at all, but a fairly common phenomenon as a phase of the critter’s molting sequence. Still weird and creepy looking, however.

The internet also tells me that seeing a praying mantis is a good omen in many cultures. Yay for that.

HOWEVER, what is the significance of a weird looking white bug being on your chile roaster? A sign that the chile is going to be white hot this year? A sign that we will have an apocalyptic disease on chile that will turn it all white? (And a deeper issue, what will become of the official State Question: “Red or Green… or White?”) Maybe the much dreaded chile weevil is about to make a new appearance on New Mexico’s chile crop. Or maybe it’s just a sign that I have gone COVID-19 goofy looking for meaning in a benign appearance of a strange bug.

I invite your interpretations as a “comment” on my website. Your ideas will be posted, unless you object.

p.s. For you ASPCA and Animal Humane Association readers (is an insect considered an animal?), I made sure it scuttled away to safety. I have not seen him or her since. My chile is still green. Oh wait — maybe it’s turning white!!!! No, that’s just the frost on the bag in my freezer.

4 thoughts on “Okay, this is creepy weird…

  1. It is white privilege. It had culturally appropriated a color, probably your foliage. When it jumped on your roaster, it was transitioning (transgender perhaps). During the interim, it returns to its true color. White. Order: mantodia; family mantidae, or mantids.


  2. Pat- we have seen many of these albino looking praying mantis in the late fall in Albuquerque but not in August. They are good for gardens, etc as they eat the bad bugs.


    1. Thanks for the comment and reading the blog, which I know has no redeeming social value “;^). I had never seen one before. Also, I don’t recognize who jigster1 is. Let me know who you are.


  3. OK – here’s a creepier weidier praying mantis story – I saw a HUGE (giant) brown something in our front yard a couple of weeks ago – couldn’t figure out what it was for awhile. It was 4-5 inches long – had giant grasshopper-looking back legs, was the color of a lizard (speckly-brown), and its wings looked like a bird’s wings – what was it?? I looked closer (as close as I dared) and saw that it was eating a green stink bug (actually I smelled that it was eating a green stink bug), so I had a suspicion about it – looked up “giant brown praying mantis” on the web – and sure enough – that’s what it was. Don’t have a picture to prove it – when I went back out to take a photo, it had disappeared – hopefully to capture and eat more green stink bugs!!



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