In the 2012 “Avengers” movie, God of Mischief Loki said, “An ant has no quarrel with a boot.”
But a soldier stationed at Joint Base Lewis McCord, Washington has a quarrel with an ant — rather an entire colony of the pesky little insects — found under the refrigerator in the barracks, which he shared to Reddit on July 15.
“I recently PCS’d to JBLM and the barracks they gave me has an ant colony under the fridge,” wrote Reddit user Eaterofseals in the R/Army Reddit.
While service members regularly maintain their own rooms, something that’s usually done through weekly inspections and regular cleaning, it’s quite another thing to find that your bunkmate in a room you just moved into is actually an ant horde.
Some responders to the original Reddit post were shocked, while others joked about how the Army was waiting for a vigilant soldier to come in and clean it themselves.
One poster, however, had an enterprising idea.
“Go weird flex and get a pet anteater,” wrote user NimrodBusiness.
Video taken by the poster shows countless little black dots scurrying around and into the cracks of a tile floor. It also reveals a corner that looks as though it hasn’t seen the light of day — or a broomstick — since the installation was founded in 1917 as Camp Lewis.
“The JBLM Directorate of Public Works became aware of the ant situation in this barracks room on Saturday evening, July 15,” according to JBLM spokesperson Gary Dangerfield. “DPW responded the morning of July 17 and treated for ants. DPW is doing a follow-up on July 18 with the customer to verify effectiveness and see if there’s anything else that needs to be done.”
But this is just one instance in a long line of housing issues faced by service members. In April of this year, an Army family saw “poop falling from the ceiling” of their newly assigned home. And black mold is a near-constant concern among Army families, according to a service-wide inspection.
In January of this year, the House Armed Services Committee launched a military quality of life panel to address everything from pay raises to daycare to housing.
“... we know military housing needs some work,” said Rep. Don Bacon (R-Neb), a retired Air Force brigadier general, who was put in charge of the panel.
“As the Chair of the Military Quality of Life Panel, I look forward to tackling issues such as military healthcare, ensuring our junior enlisted don’t need to be on SNAP/food stamps, improving military housing, day care capacity, and spouse employment,” he tweeted in June.
Sarah Sicard is a Senior Editor with Military Times. She previously served as the Digitial Editor of Military Times and the Army Times Editor. Other work can be found at National Defense Magazine, Task & Purpose, and Defense News.