I've always been a choice target for mosquitos, but this week, instead of mosquitos, I've been attacked by gnats. Every time I sit down and open my laptop, the little critters join me. I've swatted and slapped, trying to keep them away from me, but they have persisted. When one bit me on the back of the neck, I started researching ways to annihilate them.
The experts on the subject recommended attracting them with a container of vinegar. The theory is that the scent will entice them, then when they come around to explore they are supposed to drown themselves. It sounded believable to me, but the gnats didn't fall for it. Not a single gnat took a dip in my vinegar.
The next suggestion I read about was to put out sticky insect traps. The reasoning is the swarm of gnats will fly inside and get stuck in the glue. I put two of the traps out nearby, but the gnats avoided them. I caught nothing. None of the gnats were interested in death by glue.
Another idea put forward is to place a lighted candle in a dish of water and turn off the lights. The expected outcome is that the flame will attract the gnats to the dish, then while they're dazzled by the fire they dive in the water and drown. I'm not sure who came up with the notion, but gnats are not as interested in drowning themselves as the experts believe. Not a single gnat took a dip in the water, however, I did find that two of them met their demise while swimming in the hot candle wax, so I considered that experiment a small success. Even so, I still wanted to find a way to defeat them en masse.
Quite by accident, I discovered the best way to exterminate the little demons with no effort. When my water cup needed a refill, I removed the lid and found three of them floating in the last half-inch of water. There was no scent or flame to entice them, but there they were, belly-up in the water I'd been drinking. The nightmare realization was that there had probably been many more in the cup before I drank all the water. I think the gnats were on to me and my efforts to wipe them out. The evil little varmints sacrificed themselves to poison me.
The good news is I discovered an effective way to get rid of gnats. When all else fail, swallow them.