Behold the caddis fly, a quite unextraordinary, brown, moth-like insect. Admittedly, those antennae are pretty impressive, but this dude surely won’t be winning any beauty prizes. It’s the kind of insect of which my dear mum would say “at least his mother loves him.”
The larvae of these insects look even less lovely, but display intriguing behaviour. They create protective cases by spinning together bits of stone, sand, leaves and twig with a silk they secrete from glands around their mouth. The appearance of these cases varies enormously, dependant upon the building materials available.
A caddis fly larva with access to gravel or reeds will create a suitably camouflaged house. But provide your larvae with more precious building materials & they will create positive palaces:To see a magical video of the caddis fly larva building its intricate golden home, check out the work of French artist Hubert Duprat.
What, you may well ask, has all this got to do with Drowning in Stuff? Well, I spend a lot of time feeling negative about all the clutter that surrounds me. But not today.
Today I shall be a caddis fly larva. I will gather about me all the papers, magazines, books, clothes, toys, gadgets and random whatevers, fitting them together in a complex & beautiful way, to create the perfect safe space in which I will install myself until it’s time to emerge, refreshed and ready to fly.