Edited to add: My super smart husband says that the variety currently in Nashville is actually the 13-year cicada! But I think we are scheduled for both. Or something awesome like that.
I stepped on to our front porch last weekend to encounter the familiar exoskeletal calling card of the 17-year cicada clinging to the house and trees. I remember working at Vanderbilt University in the late 1990s and the grounds crew having to clear the sidewalks of cicadas. It was like a scene from an Alfred Hitchcock movie. The stench of hot cicadas baking in the summer sun is one I still recall. Shudder.
When I left my office for the afternoon yesterday I could hear their symphonic chirping. Apparently only the males make noise in a mating call to females and one single male is capable of registering noise over 100 decibels.
So basically we are surrounded by thousands of horny male bugs.
p.s. I stumbled upon Nashville Anderson Design Group Studio’s hilarious commemorative 2011 cicada gift collection and lo and behold one of their designs features the same retro screaming lady I use as my blog Facebook page profile photo. I am obviously destined to spread the word about the Music City Cicada Invasion of 2011. Take cover! They also have hilarious guitar shaped cicada swatters.