eyelash mite

Big Boss of the Day: The Eyelash Mite!

This Big Boss was brought to my attention by my furniture destroying, science-minded friend Pope Sinphaltimus Exmortus, who sent me a link to an article about eyelash mites, bearing the caption “In Your Face”.  As it turns out, my eyelashes (and yours!) are positively crawling with snuggly little monsters!

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Pictured:  The things that are squirming on your face RIGHT NOW.

The cutest of the bunch is this little guy.  Don’t you just want to squeeze him until he shits?  Too bad.  Eyelash mites do not defecate.

They DO eat, though.  They eat and eat and eat.

“What the hell are they eating,” you’re probably asking yourself, as you scrape away at your eyes with a bleach-soaked wad of steel wool.  “I don’t have any mite food in my eyelashes."  AU CONTRAIRE.  According to the article, these things contain "needlelike mouthparts for eating skin cells." 

"Well gosh,” you’re probably saying now, as you methodically slice away your eyelids with an exacto knife borrowed from Philip Seymour Hoffman.  “Surely they can’t spend ALL DAY eating my skin cells with their needlelike mouthparts.”

You’re right about that!  The rest of the time, they are laying eggs on your face.

Don’t worry about it!  This is perfectly good.  For some reason, we require this service, and as usual, the Creator of the Universe has orchestrated things in the nastiest possible manner.

“Gee, Rev. Back It On Up,” you’re likely to be saying, as you claw away at your living skin, “I sure was happier before I knew about this stuff!”

But I can’t read your words, because I have carved my eyes out and worms are laying eggs and grooming their needle-like mouthparts in their gaping sockets.


Our ancestors, like Turkana Boy, feared all manner of beasts.  If the movies are to be believed, they spent half their days hurling rocks at dinosaurs.  Here is a re-enactment in the MS Paint medium of what they might have done:

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I may have taken some artistic licenses with this rendering.  There is no scientific evidence to indicate that ancient dinosaurs had wheels or flames, and that the sun ever actively disapproved of us.  But there is no conclusive evidence to the contrary, either.

The reason for our ancestral fear is because even then, with their thick blunt heads and their spongy brains, cavemen knew that being eaten by things really sucks the root.  Nobody wants to be eaten alive.  It’s just bad form and it will ruin your day.

Perhaps that is a sign of how far we’ve come.  Our skulls and ideas are much bigger, but the things that that can eat us have gotten smaller and smaller, and now come in the form of rogue bastard cells and microscopic bugs that live in our heads.  These things may have existed in the time of cavemen, but many of them were eaten by pterodactyls and bludgeoned in competition for a mate before cancers had a chance to nom them, in the parlance of our times.  And there most assuredly existed mites and crawlies of all varieties, but Turkana Boy was far too stupid to know about them.  Ignorance is bliss, and he was otherwise consumed with trying not to displease the burning orb in the sky.

Congratulations, Eyelash Mite.  You’re small as hell but you’re obviously The Man.  Thank you for reminding me that sometimes terror is huge and burning and obvious, and sometimes, it’s too small to see.  Live it up today - eat an extra helping of my god damned skin cells, you tiny nightmare come to life.