Our unlucky victim is called Hendrik Helmer, who hails from Darwin in Australia. Waking in the middle of the night in a great deal of discomfort, Hendrik realized straight away that something had crawled into his ear. Thinking it was probably a spider, he set about trying to remove the bug from his lug.
Firstly he tried to flush the creature out with water and when this failed he switched his vacuum cleaner on and put it to his ear. Still no luck, and the water, noise and suction had made the critter angry, causing it to burrow deeper and cause even more discomfort to poor, old, hapless Hendrik.
In an interview with the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, he explained, “Whatever was in my ear didn’t like that at all.”
Now in quite a lot of pain, Hendrik got his friend to rush him to the hospital and after a brief explanation of his plight, doctors poured olive oil into his ear canal. Although this slowed the bug down, it also enabled it to burrow even deeper! However, after about ten minutes Hendrik thought that the animal was dead.
He said, “About ten minutes in, he stopped his borrowing, but he was still twitching.”
At that point the doctors reached for the forceps and successfully retrieved the 2cm-long cockroach from Hendrik’s ear canal.
The team in the Accident & Emergency unit tried to resuscitate the cockroach, for over five minutes, eventually resorting to the use of tiny electric shock paddles to try and re-start his little heart. Despite the fact that some of us would pay good money to be watered, sucked, oiled and tweaked, it was all too much for the bug, later identified as Kenny the Cockroach, and he was declared dead. For poor Kenny it was a case of ear today, gone tomorrow.
We may or may not have made that last paragraph up… you decide.