Praying Mantis

The “Praying Mantis” is truly a most remarkable creature with a striking appearance and curious habits!

  • pretendingsanity

    I HATE those things!! Hate, hate, hate! I could hardly even stand to look at that picture.

    My littles sister, who is a lover of all living things, had a “pet” praying mantis that lived in our house. One day, many years ago, I was sitting on the couch, reading Nancy Drew, waiting to go to school, when the monster crawled up ON MY LEG! I flipped out. I was paralized for fear that if I moved it would jump on my face and start eating my eyes. My sister stood there and laughed at me for a good 5 minutes before she would rescue me from the beast.

  • Daniel

    Boy, things have changed since I was a kid. If I saw one of those in my younger days, the first thing I would have grabbed was a magnifying glass with which to channel the sun’s rays and fry that little bastard. Now people are grabbing cameras and posting pictures of them online. Interesting…


  • Kano

    Why do a lot of people say things like great shot and Wow amazing composition and things like that? It’s a freaking insect on a brick wall. Then there is Daniel that sounds like he has some serial killer tendacies if you fried a Praying Mantis as a kid.

  • Brooke

    Be nice, Kano. I think it’s a pretty interesting picture.

  • Ev

    A Mantis by Brad Leithauser

    Rapt in her layered leaves, lit by
    an inner light
    She does not stir.

    She’s dropped into a trance so deep
    It looks devout, and, yes,
    This IS religious zeal -
    though focused less
    On providence than provender.

    She prays purely for prey:
    Don’t let me go go sleep
    Hungry tonight.

  • alisha

    I see the chipping paint in the picture and it worries me as my little one (17 months) was just diagnosed with lead poisoning. Heather- if this is your house just be extra careful for paint chips. If not sorry for the I’m telling you what to do post.

  • kingbenny

    the bricks are roughly the colour of poop.

  • Leon as Devil’s Advocate

    Kano said at 03:33PM, 10.20.2004:
    Why do a lot of people say things like great shot and Wow amazing composition and things like that? It’s a freaking insect on a brick wall.

    Well Kano, you will find comments of that ilk’ quite common round’ these parts. Usually from woman eager to take Dooce’s wife job away from her, or from men trying to supplant DJ Blurb as hubbie of Heather.

    …..of course, that’s just my opinion

  • kath

    James’ bug looks like it’s trying to get away with something.

    I really don’t think that letting a woman with a baby in front of you in line ought to be conditional on whether the medicine’s for “him” or you. I mean there’s good old fashioned courtesy, and also getting a sick person out of range as soon as possible…

    I have to stick up for Chuck here, Dooce. Think of the dedication he shows to that pop-tart. Think of the sheer determination, the single-minded love of the leftover people food item. How can you deny such a stirring demonstration? Hmm. You gave it to him, didn’t you?

  • Chloe

    Gah! Preying mantises freak me out.
    When I took animal behavior, I found out that they don’t actually have brains. The female remove the male’s head before copulation, and with the upper portion of the nervous system removed, the body (automatically) mates with the female. It’s really quite interesting, but it is also gross! And squicky! And why am I posting this disturbing fact? The world may never know. Gah.

  • jessica

    uh, that critter is bigger than my apartment. Not. Okay.

  • Coelecanth

    Leon and Kano,

    Oddly enough people have different opinions as to what’s a good composition. Esthetic’s are subjective, you only see a bug on a brick wall while others see a balance of horizontal and vertical lines and some interesting colours and textures. Woulda cropped it a little tighter myself, but there’s that subjective thing again.

    Just maybe people like the picture. Interesting your first thought is that the comments are somehow sexually related.

  • Tracy

    Such cynics, Leon and Kano. Had it really not occured to you that if someone has a negative opinion about the art of a person they respect, they might simply choose not to say anything instead of being snarky? Basic grade-school ethics, dudes.

  • Leon as Pollyanna

    You’re right
    Everything is wonderful
    Everything is amazing
    Everything is fabulous
    Everything is a”esthetic”

    …..gag, I can’t vomit this much sunshine

    The tag of “Devil’s Advocate” didn’t strike you at all as ironic?

    …..but again, that’s just my opinion

    The school yard dodgeball is back in your court

  • IHateToast

    oh hell, i just like it because i love insects and arachnids. and anurans and skinks and geckos and and and….
    this isn’t an art show. she’s not charging us to view or buy. the photos and essays are (for me) entertainment, as are the comments.
    lighten up, francis!

  • IHateToast

    wow, it says i wrote that 6:56 pm 10.20…
    but it’s 11:14 am the 21st over here in brisbane. aaaaah, time zones. when i turn 40, i’ll make sure i’m on a flight coming back from the states so i can just skip that day.
    so, if you’re into the lottery, the numbers are 2 6 15 24 40 and 48 … trust me, i know. i’m in tomorrow….oooooooh!

  • Yamila

    Hey I hate toast, I know what you mean. Being in aussie land causes changes in time zone, it is happening to me here as well being down south. I love insects and all animals, and i guide the kids at the museum and they love the mantis and dead stick insects.

  • Heather

    My God! It’s huge!! Florida mantises are itty bitty compared to that brick-sized monster.

  • meep

    i’m an asian. i didn’t know a praying mantis is considered a lucky omen. :\
    by the way. asian is a very, very, very, very general term ^__^

  • ingrid

    1. if you haven’t seen it already, (and assuming blockbusters in utah even make it available) you and jon simply must rent “latter days.” it’s a touching boy-meets-boy story of a fine young mormon sent on a mission to west hollywood (bow-chick–bow-bow). officemates had to watch me convulse at the sight of such a bug. shiver, indeed.

    3. alas, i made my poor mother cry that after months of her doting on me, i became a “dada-ist.” it’ll soon be your turn!

  • ginny

    OMG. I SO saw Leta, chewing on that window frame last night. I didn’t want to say anything – given you don’t want any unsolicited advice and all? But I thought you should know. As a parent.

    And I am definitely not going to tell you what I saw that Mantis do to Chuck.? I’ll just say that they DO bite.

    Chuck may or may not have liked it.

  • Liz

    I must say that the Praying Mantis is one of the two bugs I will actually touch (the other being the adorable Lady Bug), but that one just looks frightening! It’s huge!!!

  • Karen

    With respect to your post “On your way to becoming America’s Next Top Person With a Brain in His Mind”:

    Hear freakin’ HEAR.

  • IHateToast

    me again. i’m stalling writing a paper. bad me. i think what makes the p.m. so amazing is that it rotates its head and you can tell s/he is watching you. it doesn’t scurry. it is not afraid. it just watches you, and if your index finger gets too close, it’ll open its ambitious mouth. it seems so wise and cultured (scuze me as i anthropomorphize) with and abdomen that looks like cut-away coat tails.
    and it’s a great killer.
    very hanibal lecter.
    when they get that big, you need to name them, because chances are, they have mastered 2 languages and quantum physics, and expect to be address by their name.
    okay, back to the paper. this sucks.

  • thesoulofhope


  • AssKissingAlert

    I think Leon is not entirely beyond the pale here. Every day there is a lot of gratuitous brown-nosing going on … NOT that I think people should be more snarky. However, sometimes the gushing is disproportionate to the normality or “average-ness” of whatever’s been posted for us to comment on.

  • Snarky McBitchypants

    Now to offend thousands of people…

    The trick is to wait until you have something interesting to say and THEN post a comment.

    Just an idea.

  • louisegyrl

    they are indeed supposed to be lucky – so don’t kill it or anything. ;)

  • espressocrazedboy

    No kidding – most of the comments here say the exact same thing…

  • Jimmy Jim

    I think I like comments on blogs more than blogs themselves. First, you’ll get a bunch of people who are all “OMG I TOTALLY AGREE WITH YOU”, then someone will dissent, then someone will be like “Well, if you don’t like it then don’t read the blog” and I feel like saying…dude, comments are available for a reason, if someone wrote a negative or disagreeing letter to the editor would you tell them to stop reading the paper? My opinion is if a blog has a comments option than it is opening itself up to criticism and it is to them that I would say hey, if you can’t take the good with the bad then just forget about having comments at all (obviously I don’t condone disrespect or anything like that). Anyway, I’m sure most of the pointless comments would be gone if there wasn’t a way for people to link back to their own blogs.

  • kim

    jim, that is a really good point (about the linking back). but me, personally, i think: so what? just let people do what they wanna do. if heather doesn’t like it, she can shut down the comments and i’m sure she’d do that. until then, why not let people say what they want even if it’s just to link to their site. after all, it’s heather’s site. sometimes i wonder if people don’t have anything else to worry about.. how lucky you are.. ;o)

  • jessielee

    regarding ingrid’s recommendation of ‘latter days’ – it’s available at hollywood video’s in utah, and their CEO is LDS. they don’t hide everything from the public here, folks.

  • Jimmy Jim

    You also make a good point Kim. And I do in fact with I had other things to worry about. Like one of the other commenters I should be writing a paper. I should just get a damn typewriter because trying to write a paper when the internet is right there is just bad. Anyway, Leta is very adorable and I actually really like Dooce’s picture. All in all this is a grade-A fantabulous site.

  • NancyD5

    It amazes me the patience a dog can have regarding people food on the table and the amount of uncapturable, nearly unleashable impatience they can have when it’s time for a w-a-l-k. (Now just shortened to ‘a-l-k’ at our house because Daisy knows what Walk means. ‘Go’, ‘ready’, ‘w’, the slightest sounds of any of these words sends her tail pounding on the floor like the whip of the mad man beating a prisoner.

  • Kano

    Leon knows exactly what I am talking about. It’s fine and dandy that everyone has their own opinion and their own taste. It’s the mindless Yuppie Java talk that (Bugs) me. Instead of giving true opinions on some of the photos they are too caught up in kissing ass. It’s cool that you captured the Mantis but it’s an ok picture. I am not knocking the site…..but the icky gooie ass kissing makes me want to hurl.Someone has to interject some negativity to keep the perfect balance between the Ying and Yang….so it may as well be me.

  • AssKissingAlert

    Typical comments that should have appeared about this picture (because they appear about every picture), but didn’t:

    1. That praying mantis is SO HOT!
    2. That praying mantis looks JUST LIKE JON! OMG!
    3. I totally agree that praying mantises are interesting!!!!!
    4. That praying mantis is AN INTERNET ROCKSTAR!!

  • Lori

    Such a coincidence. As I was leaving work Tuesday night there was a big “mantis” on the brick stairs. Before this sighting I had not seen one in years. I wonder if something in the enviroment has changed to allow them to become more abundant.

  • Meg

    I *love* the praying mantis picture! Thank goodness this is the last thing I saw on your site before I got up, or I’d be picturing W with his pants down. Ewww!!

    Incidentally, you and Google need to have a talk. One of the ads on YOUR page was requesting donations for George W and the other republicans. Eeeeewwww!

  • Becca

    That’s funny. The other day I was taking pictures of the spider on my ceiling.

  • Laura

    Nice picture.

  • jac

    I have a praying mantis picture as my desktop wallpaper at the moment. But yours looks BIG.

  • Angie

    That would make me scream and stand on a chair, like the maid in the Tom and Jerry cartoons!!!!!

  • Chris

    Wow, I haven’t seen one of those in years. Great shot!

  • Dyanna

    My neighbor had one right by her front door too and FREAKED OUT. Called my husband to kill it and was extremely annoyed when she found out that you’re not allowed to kill them (at least not in NJ) – then she freaked out some more when she found out her neighbor on the other side brought it from the park where he found it thinking it was ‘so beautiful’. HA!

  • Stephen McKenna

    That looks big enough to bite your head off!

  • Dawn

    This does look like a very big one – more like two – are they reconvening the procedure maybe or is it really only one? I don’t know where this tale comes from, but growing up in South Africa, if we saw a praying mantis around the house, it was said to signify that we were about to receive guests.

  • beachgal

    Those things are so neat. Like giant over sized grasshoppers, almost. Can’t wait for my son to be big enough so I can show him bugs and stuff.

    Great shot, as usual.

  • Lala Wawa

    That is HUGE! Can’t wait to see what Google ads pop up with this one.

  • tiger

    …nice picture. We seldom see these around here, so when we do I think it’s a fairly cool experience. My MIL brought one home for the kids once… in a JAR and I HAD to let it go outside… it seemed somehow… like tempting fate in a bad way to keep a Praying Mantis in a jar.
    …I know, I’m strange. :)

  • sab

    that’s so scary..