Busy As A Bee

I am writing in response to The Daily Post word Bumble, and I immediately thought about that idiom ‘busy as a bee’.  People often use a variation of this idiom for the beaver and whether you talk about the bee or the beaver, they both seem to be busy.  Although I have heard many people talk about eager beavers, I have never heard about the eager bee.  I guess since bees are insects they are lower life forms from beavers who are classified as animals and come to think of it who decides which life form is the hardest working one?

Bees are pretty industrious, flying out from the hive, seeking that flower that has opened up, gathering the honey and then returning to base.  Living in a beehive requires the bee to develop social skills.  They must get along, so they can live together and they need to cooperate in their work efforts.  Does this make all the bees communists?  In the purest sense, they are not because a communist society does not have different social structures, so a communist bee hive would not tolerate the queen.

If I lived in a crowded beehive, I would want to spend every minute of every day outside, however some of other worker bees have jobs which require them to remain at home tending honeycombs and fanning their wings to cool the nest off, however these bees are known to take frequent breaks.  And then there are the Drones, who are quite lazy, as all they are required to do is mate with a fertile queen.  Live is good as a Drone, as they don’t have to leave the hive until early afternoon, then they spend their time carousing around in packs, and when they get home probably just a few hours later, they will rely on the worker bees to feed them.  Queens manage to stay busy, they are relatively immobile, laying more than 1,000 eggs each day.

There is no quota for the bee, there are no time clocks for them to punch in or out on, there is no carrot or stick incentive and if one bee wants to do less work than the other bees, it is likely that no one would notice them slacking off or even care.  A honeybee tasked with the daily foraging of nectar or pollen might work anywhere from just a few hours a day up to about 12.  If the flowers are particularly rich with nectar, or if there’s lots of pollen that’s ripe for collection, forager bees will go back to the hive to recruit even more numbers.  On nice days a honeybee might be asked to work overtime.  These worker bees spend their daylight hours outside, but when it gets dark they head back to the nest and relax.  I know that I would have trouble sleeping if I didn’t have any eyelids, which is the case for honeybees, but they do stop moving, relax their muscles, and they let their cute little antennae gradually slump.

Bees take a holiday when the weather is not conducive for honey gathering, so when the temperature drops below some certain degree usually somewhere in the 50’s Fahrenheit scale, or if it looks like it’s going to rain, or if there are strong winds (above about 15 mph) they have the day off.  Honeybees remain in the hive during the winter, clumped together to stay warm and they manage to stay warm, in much the same way as they cool off the hive, as the take turns buzzing their wings to warm the others, and this is a lot of work.

There are not a whole lot of animals who build things and I think that the saying, ‘busy as a bee’ or ‘busy as a beaver’, might have something to do with their building skills.  Sure there are webs and cocoons, mounds, burrows and nests, but only bees (excluding humans) utilize a hexagon, making every cell in their honeycomb from this shape.  How did the bees figure out that hexagons would be better to use than circles, squares, rectangles or triangles?  The bees actually make perfect hexagons, where all six sides are of equal length.  It turns out that these hexagon shaped honeycombs require less building material than any of the other shapes and they are able to hold more honey.

If Shakespeare asked, ‘Is it better to be busy or not to be busy’, I would respond that I would rather be busy.  There are so many people that work their whole lives and when they finally retire, they have no idea what to do with themselves.  I keep busy with my writing and I hope you enjoyed my story today.

24 thoughts on “Busy As A Bee

    1. Thank you very much. I did get a standing ovation once in my senior play. It felt really awesome to hear the applause and to see the audience all standing up clapping for me and the rest of the cast. I guess it felt better for me, because I had the curtain closer scene playing the part of Lou Martin in ‘Up the Down Staircase’.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Hmm..well i always was the one that was let say..introvert and awkward..and i talked to no one.. (still don’t).. Here i can speak with my fingers..

        Liked by 1 person

      2. You know it also means age sex location.. In chatting terms.. In urban terms it also means..
        What stupid people say on chats to learn who you are and where you live so they can come and kill you.
        I was thinking why would you say that..

        Liked by 1 person

      3. I did not consider that, but now that you mention it I have heard of that internet slang which is used in instant messaging and chat rooms and this is important information for getting to know what type of person you have just contacted. I think this code is mainly used by silly girls and naive guys seeking a hookup, but I guess that there are some killers out there also.

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      4. I am aware of that, but this pingback became a link to their post and besides mentioning me, he or she mentioned Piper’s Adventures, Bad Dad Cartoons 101, I’m a Writer, Yes, I Am!, TheMicroRead and your post. I thought that this blogger sent the same message to everyone. It is possible that they are one of those trolls, as everyone of those posts that they mentioned, I had hit the LIKE button on.

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      5. That pingback method of getting attention is so classless, as I feel if you want attention, then you should try to write something good. I am aware of Fandango’s popularity and even I have mentioned him in one of my posts.

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      6. Well he was a blogger before.. And had 5k followers.. He burned himself out. Shut the site. He recently took to blogging again..

        Liked by 1 person

      7. Wow 5,000 followers, I think that I have like 25. I went to his post and the writing was nothing special. I wanted to hit the LIKE button, but I actually thought it was crap, so I didn’t. That is great that you know the history of the other bloggers.

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    1. Your comment is a bit cryptic, but I am taking it as a compliment even though you did not hit the LIKE button. You grouped with some of my favorite writers on this site and I have to thank you for that. Piper or Debbie Pierce writes such beautiful poetry and her ‘Water Down the Falls’ post today was spectacular. Water is such a beautiful element and falling water is even better. The birds and the bees was also awesome by Bad Dad Cartoons 101 and I just started following him. Thanks for mentioning my post, ‘Busy As A Bee’. I did also read Bumbling Blog – I’m a Writer, Yes, I Am! I also enjoyed Bumble by TheMicroRead and A bumbling world by Journey who I refer to as Sight.

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  1. Now it looks like I am the one who is being cryptic as the comment which has a Pingback did not show up here. Anyway this is what it said, ‘[…] Piper’s Adventures Water Down the Falls The birds and the bees… – Bad Dad Cartoons 101 Busy As A Bee – A Unique Title For Me Bumbling Blog – I’m a Writer, Yes, I Am! Bumble – TheMicroRead A bumbling world – […]’

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