Hello folks who wonder if we should start knocking on plastic instead of wood since we are always surrounded by it,

War is terrible. There, I said it. For all my critics who construed my silence as a gesture of support for war.

Having seen two of the most powerful wars that left the entire world reeling from its effects, caused so much division, one that has caused so much anguish throughout the globe, I wish we could have stopped it before it happened. Alas, it's too late now. For people wondering which wars I am referencing, I am specifically talking about the wars of Johnny Depp v/s Amber Heard and Kanye West v/s Pete Davidson that has defined this generation.

Recently, I had the fortune (or misfortune) of stumbling upon a war in my backyard. Sadly, this war rages on till this day i.e., 5 days and counting.

But before we go to the war, let me introduce you to the protagonist: the pavement ant.

Like their name implies, these ants are commonly found nesting on pavement cracks but I have also found their colonies under logs and concrete slabs. These ants are one of the most common ants you will see walking on the pavement during Spring and Summer. But if you see a scene like this, like I did, stop and cancel all your upcoming appointments for that day. B'coz you are in for a treat.

Every Spring and early Summer, colonies of these Pavement Ants will feud with other colonies for access to the prime real estate on the sidewalks. It starts off innocently with one ant who sniffs another ant that does not smell from its own colony and they both start to grapple using their mandibles. At the same time, they will both release chemical signals called pheromones that call for backup. And thus, a small-scale battle escalates into a full-fledged war.

Now, these ants one on one just stay in that kissing position for hours on end till one of them blinks. But that is not how war works. There are no rules in a war. So, when 2 ants are engaged in a tussle another ant from either colony will come and try to take down the opponent. The way they do it is either by chopping off their head, abdomen or snipping their legs. And since the victim ant is locked with the other ant, there is little it can do to protect itself.

The scene below reminds me of a movie scene where the squad of goons holds down the protagonist while the antagonist shows who's the boss. Observe the unfortunate ant who has lost one of her mandibles (mouthpart) and almost all her legs, while the other ants are not content with that, they are still trying to rip her abdomen apart.

There is so much fast-paced action happening at every corner, that it is hard to keep up.

But when I narrow down my focus, I see the true horrors of war. Below are two ants who died while grappling with each other.

Since chopping off the head or the abdomen is a superior strategy of neutralizing your opponent, you might even stumble into a scene like this.

Yes, that's right. You are seeing a headless ant body twitching with the decapitated head at a distance from the body. You see, this is possible since even after the head is chopped off, the limbs are connected to mini-brains called ganglia that control the movement of its legs. Since the brain is not connected, those movements are not coordinated. Here is a closer look at the body.

And here is a closer look at the head. It truly looks at peace with itself.

No matter which side wins in the end, all I can say is "Long live the queen!"

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