In some Asian cultures, it is considered good luck to have a cricket in your house.
I know this because I saw the Disney movie Mulan, and am aware that Disney is always scrupulously accurate in its depictions of other cultures.
It’s been on my mind because for the past two weeks or so we’ve had a cricket living in the brick chimney in the center of our kitchen.
For the most part, I haven’t minded the cricket as long as it stays in the chimney. The chirping doesn’t bother me either, although other members of my family don’t agree.
Other Members of My Family: “Make it shut up!”
Rufus the Wonder Dog and Raffi the Dog of Destiny were bothered by the cricket chirping at first, and glared at the chimney for the first few days.
But since nothing has actually happened except for the chirping, they’ve gotten bored and moved on.
For the past couple of weeks, we’ve occasionally put a couple CDs of Nat King Cole’s greatest hits in the living room stereo at night, as everyone is hopping into bed and going to sleep.
For relaxing, mellow beddy-bye music to help you drift into Sleepy-Bo-Bo Land, you’ll never go wrong with Nat King Cole.
The funny thing is the kitchen cricket begins chirping as soon as the CD begins.
A couple nights ago I was still awake when the last CD ended, and the stereo shut off for the night.
For a few moments all was silent. Then it hit me — all was silent. The cricket stopped chirping as Nat sang his last note.
Nat’s daughter Natalie did an album a few years ago where she mixed her vocals with his, turning the songs into a family duet separated by decades.
That wasn’t entirely unpredictable, but I’ll bet Nat in his wildest dreams never expected he’d someday be accompanied by a kitchen cricket.
As of last night, we have a new development in the case: we now have two crickets in our kitchen. Another chirping has been detected near the stairwell into the basement.
Now my understanding is that those crickets are males chirping to attract females. If so, they’re in for disappointment.
Cricket Cletus: “Dude, we’ve been chirping for a week now. I don’t think the chicks are going to show up.”
Cricket Stanley: “Whoa! Maybe we should go back outside.”
Cricket Cletus: “Dude.”