Insects make many of us want to light ourselves on fire, and understandably so. Spiders (technically not insects but just go with it) are nightmares on eight legs that climb into your mouth while you sleep, and cockroaches are bullets of septic waste. June bugs float in your iced tea in the summer and moths molest your genitals. The jury is still out on bees, but only because their vomit is delicious. Butterflies are morons.
But there’s one bug that’s totally bitchin’: The praying mantis. At first glance they appear as pious pocket Martians with their green, triangular heads and grace-giving hands. However, they’re so much more.
1. You and I are more alien than these little dudes. They’ve been on Earth for .3 million years, which means their abuelos hung out with stegosauruses.
2. They have one designated ear located between their legs for the sole purpose of detecting bats. Just like Chaka Khan.
3. Praying hands? More like, preying hands! Their endearing green limbs are actually sharp, thorny claws for crushing unsuspecting lunch meat like wasps, tarantulas, small birds and your teacup poodle.
4. Males can mount females for 24 hours! But don’t go trolling for mantises yet, Ladies and Gents. It’s only because â€¦
5. De-mounting results in post-coital cannibalism. “Oh yeah! Don’t stop!”
6. They’re out to kill Aladdin.
7. They can see up to 50 feet away with their sets of five eyes.
8. They win Oscars!
9. Their heads can rotate 180 degrees.
10. They ask themselves, “what if?”
So before you run away in terror or point a can of Aqua Net at a mantis in your vicinity, take a moment to remember that really, they’re not so different from you or me or Tilda Swinton.