Everyone at the Bridge Street Hostel agreed the roaches were a problem. But most of the volunteers felt it was something they could live with. That is, until they learned to talk.
No one was quite sure how the roaches learned language. There were a lot of wild theories, from aliens, to pesticides, to black magic. That, however, was not the real issue.
You see, the Bridge Street Hostel was run by a collective. All it took to become a voting member was two hours of volunteer work a week. The newly intelligent roaches had no problem cleaning up garbage, so they easily fulfilled that minimum. And, since no one had ever anticipated this issue, there was nothing in the bylaws that specified members had to be human beings.
At the very next collective meeting, the roaches outnumbered the humans by several thousand to one.
Thus it was easy for them to force a vote of non-confidence in the board of directors and replace them with roach candidates.
And that is how the Bridge Street Hostel became, literally, a roach motel.
N.K. Wagner is Publisher and Executive Editor of Page & Spine.