March 28, 2007

Ziggy Cactus And The Spiders From Virginia

Yesterday evening, I was looking over Beth's shoulder while she looked at something online. "Ew gross!" she exclaimed as she gazed at sudden movement by the base of the monitor.

Beth: What are they?
Me: Um. They're spiders.
Beth: Those are not spiders.
Me: Then what the hell are they?
Beth: Oh, damn. Those are spiders!

There were millions of the little fuckers swarming all over the corner of the desk. Always eloquent in my horror-filled exclamations, I said "fuck" really, really loud. Even though Mia was standing beside me. Then, for variety, I said "fuck" again. Maybe even a little louder. Afterwards, I mixed things up by saying "fuck." Then I left the room pulling my daughter out with me.

See, that's pretty much my worst nightmare. Okay, okay. My worst nightmare is being stranded on the ledge hanging precariously above the Grand Canyon as Helen Reddy, clad only in leather bondage gear, stands above me at the rim belting out a never-ending version of I Am Woman backed by Lawrence Welk and his amazing polka band whilst millions of spiders spring to life in my mouth as I'm forced to engage in lewd acts with Bob Barker who screams "how do you like my version of Plinko, bitch?"

Fortunately for me, that's not the way the evening played out. I like Bob Barker. Just not in that way. Anyway aside from be glad that I wasn't sodomized by a popular game show host and sung at by an extremely irrelevant pop singer, several things became immediately clear. First and foremost, my fear of spiders hasn't gotten any better. Second, we have to move. Perhaps I'm overreacting. If Beth were here, she would have corrected me, telling me that there were only dozens, not millions. To-may-to, to-mah-to. That's beside the point. There were spiders. Crawling. All around me. All over my shit. Maybe we don't have to move...but our home office is dead to me.

That's just wrong.

Posted by Chris at March 28, 2007 7:24 AM

I'm with you there, I am totally terrified of spiders. Oh and centipedes too, pretty much anything with more than 4 legs gives me the heebies. Nut for real fun, spiders make me scream like a little girl!

Posted by: Jeff A at March 28, 2007 7:50 AM

Umm that should be but not nut :)

Posted by: Jeff A at March 28, 2007 7:51 AM

Spider's don't make me crazy, but snakes? Yeah, that's why we don't live in Florida anymore. (Hubby had a crazy idea that we should retire down there and we tried for 6 years to live there. The snakes, well that was the last straw. I informed him one hot sunny day after finding a snake in the pool, that I was going home!)

Posted by: Maribeth at March 28, 2007 8:11 AM

What do you mean you don't want to dream that you're an Australian woman? Oh hang on, it's Helen Reddy. I take that back...

Posted by: E :) at March 28, 2007 8:17 AM

Spiders, not so much--I will squish the ones that I see in the house and tell them how sorry I am for squishing them.
Sharks, I have a love hate for. I almost hyperventilate even thinking about swimming with them. Good thing I live where the only sharks to be found are the two-legged variety.

And, thanks for the morning laugh.

Posted by: Nanette at March 28, 2007 8:17 AM

One of the funniest posts I've read in a while.

Arachnophobia seems to be a real guy thing. Now the Helen Reddy/Bob Barker phobia? Not so sure that's gender-specific.

I'm going to laugh about this all day.

Posted by: Mammaloves at March 28, 2007 8:43 AM

With me it's things that bite or sting. Most spiders don't so I'm okay with them. Depends on the spider though. We have black widows here.

Posted by: ann adams at March 28, 2007 9:04 AM

have the heebie-jeebies right now. about the spiders (and maybe a little bit about bob barker too.)

Posted by: ali at March 28, 2007 9:07 AM

All right, that whole 'worst nightmare' scenario pretty much made my morning. I don't think I could come up with a worse situation if I tried. Hee hee... thanks for the grins.

Posted by: martin at March 28, 2007 9:08 AM

Burn that mother down. Wait, maybe that's a little drastic.

Get everybody out of the house, THEN burn that mother down.

Posted by: Fraulein N at March 28, 2007 9:15 AM

I hope the spider photo I posted didn
t ad to your anxiety.

Posted by: Allan at March 28, 2007 9:18 AM

that's brutal! ugh. i'm with you on the never ever entering that room again!

growing up i lived in a 200 some-odd year old house and there were creepy crawlies everywhere... i once slept in the living room for a couple months because i found a spider on my bed. and i bathed at a friends house because there was a spider in the shower.

perhaps a cleansing ritual involving lots of RAID would gain you some peace.

Posted by: monique at March 28, 2007 9:27 AM

Sounds like a mama spider gave birth. Ever killed a pregnant spider, no realizing it was pregnant? Yep, done it. Three times. Those little fuckers go everywhere. Tough to round 'em all up efficiently. Vacuuming them up works best, but then you have a vacuum full of tiny, itty bitty baby spiders. Then if you have a bagless vac like me, you empty it into the garbage and then quickly tie up the garbage bag and go directly out with it.

Moral of the story.... time to dust under the desk a little. Make Beth do it. *snicker*

Posted by: coolchick at March 28, 2007 9:28 AM

Nope... you have to move...

That was SURELY Helen/Bob's recon team... Can Larry and the Grand Canyon be far behind??

Posted by: KT at March 28, 2007 9:29 AM

I completely understand the spider fear. I'm not a fan of the eight-legged myself. I think your reaction was valid. As for your biggest frightens me too, but I don't think for the same reason :P

Posted by: suze at March 28, 2007 9:36 AM

When I was younger I used to kill the spiders on my walls as messily as I could, and then leave the bodies there as a warning to all other spiders. I think it worked pretty well. I'm not allowed to do that anymore...

I also did the dead room thing, and not return to a room for weeks after a spider was spotted. That was before I learned the "warning" technique.

Good luck. I advise burning everything in the office, maybe tearing down the walls and just rebuilding. It'd be much easier to deal with. YUCK.

Posted by: Phoenix at March 28, 2007 9:39 AM

Fuck! Coffee came out my nose!
YOU know I HAD to read this post the way you titled it and you totally made coffee come out my nose! Move closer to me so I can smack you upside your head! (snort!)

I have been known to call friends to come and kill them! Maybe that is why I lost all my friends! Hum...pondering thoughts...

Posted by: gypsy at March 28, 2007 9:51 AM

But, what's worse? Spiders? Or the ginormous Texas Tree Roaches that FLY?


Either way. That room is so vacated.

Posted by: Pammer at March 28, 2007 9:54 AM

I am with you on the spiders. Can't stand them.

Posted by: William at March 28, 2007 9:56 AM

I'd be packing right alongside you. I can handle just about any creepy crawly except for spiders. I blame my grandmother for letting me watch a movie where someone held this woman's mouth open and a spider dropped into it. Ewwww!

Posted by: Traci at March 28, 2007 9:57 AM

If I could add to Fraulein N.'s comment:

Burn it down and salt the earth.

I'm just so glad there is no picture of the herd of free ranging spiders, because I'm not sure I could ever click on your URL again.

I'm gonna go shudder for about an hour now.

Posted by: Contrary at March 28, 2007 10:11 AM

I once wacked a big spider (unbeknownst to me that it was carying an egg sac) with a shoe; and afterward, a ba-gillion baby spiders came out, scattering in every which direction. I don't have any issues with spiders, but that scared the holy hell out of me. So I get it.
Besides, if it were cockroaches? I'd be putting up for sale signs in the lawn that night.

Posted by: smoness at March 28, 2007 10:31 AM

My grandfather used to say those spiders are more afraid of you then you are of them. It seemed to work for me. Maybe you should try hypnosis... You are getting sleepy. You are getting sleeepy.

Posted by: Johnny Smoke at March 28, 2007 10:42 AM

You are right, you HAVE to move. And I am dead serious. That is a horrible nightmare. Seriously. Wow. Now I am all freaked out. MOVE NOW.

Posted by: alfredsmom at March 28, 2007 10:46 AM

Oh, man, I hear you! Spiders are terrifying. In fact, all bugs are pretty scary. We had carpenter ants crawling out of the overflow drain in our ensuite bathroom last summer; I must have squished 30 in the space of 3 minutes. As a result, I have not set foot in that bathroom again. (You should let Beth know that it's a good way to get out of cleaning bathrooms!)

Turns out there was a nest in our roof which we discovered when replacing our roof. That seemed to solve the problem last summer. But a few days ago there was a carpenter ant trucking across the living room floor. And another one later in the day. Crap crap crappity crap. Soon our whole house will be dead to me.

Posted by: Carmen at March 28, 2007 11:23 AM

Oh, and yes, I do know that spiders are not bugs. Just in case any of you are thinking it! :)

Posted by: Carmen at March 28, 2007 11:26 AM


I was reaching into our heating vent the other day to get some pieces of broken vent-cover when the heat came on and blew a HUGE (dead) spider out and into my face. I seriously lost my shit for a minute. When I came to and tried to brush it back down the hole (what, pick it up? Not me!), it came blowing right back out at me. Fuckers are after me even after their death.

Posted by: heels at March 28, 2007 11:26 AM

Reading this I know I will be itching all day. If I saw the spiders in action, my bags would be packed until my husband can prove to me they are gone. ew!

Posted by: Jenn at March 28, 2007 11:28 AM

Oh, and yes, I do know that spiders are not bugs. Just in case any of you are thinking it! :)

Posted by: Carmen at March 28, 2007 11:34 AM

OMG. I was hoping this was kind of a, the spiders were IN the monitor, on the know, like some weird screen saver or perverted joke someone played on you. But they're REAL??? Ohhhhhh.... I feel faint... I HATE spiders. HATE. HATE. HATE. In our old (creepy) house with the old (unfinished) basement I would have to do laundry and ever single time I would find some big brown wolf spider in the laundry. One of the best things about building a new house. No spiders.

You poor thing. I would called an exterminator NOW.

Posted by: sue at March 28, 2007 11:45 AM

I have to stop reading the rest of the comments, because they are giving me the creeps. ugh.. I hate snakes more, but yeah.. spiders creep me out.. especially whent hey sneek up on me.. yuck.

Posted by: Molly at March 28, 2007 11:47 AM

oh and my inability to check my spelling.. that scares me too..

Posted by: Molly at March 28, 2007 11:48 AM

OK, I LOVED Price is Right as a kid - every afternoon after school at my grandparents' house. I don't think I'll be able to look at Bob Barker the same way ever again.

And what's the big deal with spiders man?

Posted by: Heather at March 28, 2007 12:22 PM

I have a gecko phobia--small white to giant yellow eyed ugly. Salamanders and a few brands of lizards included.

So, I moved to a country where the little white ones don't occupy ANY building I'm in and there is no chance in hell I'd accidentally cross path with the foot long icky scary ones. Heh.

Yep. You need to move. Just kidding. They're ONLY spiders! Man up and use your rolled up newspaper, for crying out loud!


Posted by: oakley at March 28, 2007 1:09 PM

and now i want to kill myself.*

thank you.

*I know, I know: no joking matter. sigh.

Posted by: s@bd at March 28, 2007 1:12 PM

I am a wuss when it comes to bugs. In fact, the other night, I opened the dishwasher and a very small spider crawled out from under the door. This meant, of course, that I needed to run the dishwasher two more times to ensure that Mr. Spider who probably wouldn't survive the heat dry cycle didn't leave any spider pee on my clean dishes. I alerted James of the spider by shrieking hysterically and hopping up a down, waving a spatula for good measure and flailing wildly.

Posted by: Emily at March 28, 2007 1:42 PM

What is it about the word "fuck" that is so satisfying? It's really such a beautiful, utilitarian word.

I think I'd rather have Bob Barker do naughty things to me than have the swarm of spiders. Don't judge.

Posted by: Librarian Girl at March 28, 2007 1:49 PM

So can I have all of your cds? They probably have spiders on them.

Posted by: Sarah, Goon Squad Sarah at March 28, 2007 2:02 PM

I can not stand spiders, reading your story brings back awful memories of the time I tried to kill a large spider that looked like it had severe problems. When I sprayed it with bug spray, thousands of little spiders jumped off of it's back. 8 years later and it still gives me the heebie jeebies just thinking of it.

Posted by: anna at March 28, 2007 2:06 PM

A dozen? yikes..did a colony move in? lol Nightmare....*skakes off a chill*

Posted by: Felicia at March 28, 2007 3:04 PM

We had tons of big scary spiders last summer. I'm hoping they won't be back, but I think I'm kidding myself. We had to do the web-check outdoors with the broom before walking out on our deck. Plus, in the garage? My husband backed into an occupied black widow's web. I'm surprised you didn't hear the screaming and swearing at your house.

Posted by: Annie at March 28, 2007 3:08 PM

Spiders give me the willies. A dozen... a million... same thing. We had a baby spider issue a few springs ago. There must have been a nest (or whatever spiders keep their eggs in) in our bathroom exhaust fan. I won't say millions... but we definately had hundreds. I remember standing in the bathroom and squishing 27 (yes, I counted as I squished) teeny tiny spiders just on the window. Ick... I get the shivers just remembering it. For a few nights I would stand on our bed and get as many as I saw on our ceiling. I could not close my eyes if I saw any before the light went out. I was ok squishing the little tiny baby spiders... but only because I couldn't bare the thought of any of them being allowed to get big. Sorry for the ramble... but I wish you luck at being able to sit comfortably at your desk sometime soon!

Posted by: Colleen at March 28, 2007 3:16 PM

OMG eww. Thanks for not making that a Kodak moment!!!

Posted by: Teenuh at March 28, 2007 3:17 PM

You are hilarious! I don't have a fear-problem with spiders, thank goodness! We have them all over our house and I mostly don't bother them because I'd rather have them than roaches (yuk) or ants (annoying)!

Posted by: Celina at March 28, 2007 3:20 PM

God, I hate that Bob Barker...................

Posted by: Julie at March 28, 2007 3:37 PM

I'm NOT afraid of spiders and yet I had an incident while I was pregnant involving a spider IN MY MOUTH that I am still repressing to this day.

I kid you not.

P.S. Burning eucalyptus scented candles in the house will keep the spiders out (and the fleas).

Posted by: the weirdgirl at March 28, 2007 4:22 PM

You should totally move and give all of your spider-infested books and music to us!

I know that gives you the heebies and I don't really like swarms of anything, but spiders are very cool and I can't believe all you people kill them!!! Murderers. Spiders eat the really icky bugs, y'all. You should be buying them dinner not squishing them!

Won't someone think of the spiders?

Posted by: trix at March 28, 2007 5:13 PM

BTW, I totally want to hear a recording of the first time Mia says "Fuck!". You know when she'll do it, right? When Grandma and Grandpa come over and she sees a spider; she'll point and yell "Fuck!". At least that's exactly what my kids would have done!

It will be priceless!!

Posted by: trix at March 28, 2007 5:20 PM

I once actually cried in the presence of a huntsman spider in australia (it was above my bed -- it was traumatizing and there was nobody around to kill it). Seriously, check out a picture of one and be grateful that you live nowhere near a place where they exist...

Posted by: sandra at March 28, 2007 5:58 PM

I would have died. I think you should move. To Canada or something.

Posted by: Kari at March 28, 2007 6:03 PM

Perhaps you should have put the coffee cups away instead of leaving them all over?


Posted by: Leah at March 28, 2007 7:42 PM

Speaking of spiders... I read something awhile back that said when you wake up in the middle of the night after having been asleep with your mouth open, and you feel that tickle in the back of your throat that makes you cough all dry like, that it's probably a spider that's crawled into your mouth during the night. *aaaackkkk*

I know, don't thank me. Just tape your mouth shut with those Breathe Right nasal strips tonight.


Posted by: coolchick at March 28, 2007 9:36 PM

I just had to read this again. It made me laugh even harder this time.

This definitely needs to make the highlight tape.

Posted by: Mammaloves at March 28, 2007 10:52 PM

Time to move dude...I'll be waiting for you guys here in NC...

Posted by: Dee at March 28, 2007 11:17 PM

Dude, it's all good. Nothing to fear. I know spiders are creepy, but hear me out. My mother, the kindhearted soul that she is, loves spiders. Well, not hairy tarantulas or anything, but common house spiders are her favorite. As a kid, I remember her turning a little spider into her pet. This thing would crawl out on the soap dish every morning and watch her brush her teeth and wash her face. She used to tell us kids that he would wave his leg at her, as if to say hi. Obviously she was being fanciful, not insane, and actually I started to like Clyde, as she named him.

Then, one fateful morning, my grandmother who was visiting screamed from the bathroom and came out with a newspaper in her hand. Clyde lay dead, scrunched into a ball on the soap dish. My mother stoically flushed him down the toilet.

So hey, maybe it will make you feel better to think that those little spiders are Clyde's relatives. They are NICE spiders, waving their little legs at you! There ya' go! Don't you feel better now?

Posted by: Snickrsnack Katie at March 29, 2007 12:24 AM

Ick, spiders! Just reading that kind of creeps me out. I've actually had nightmares about spiders coming to get me, so I would say they are high up on my list of worst nightmares. The absolute worst for me is claustrophobia-type stuff. Have you ever seen Kill Bill, where she's buried in the coffin? That's my worst nightmare right there.

Posted by: bad penguin at March 29, 2007 9:52 AM

Eeeek! That's my worst nightmare! I am absolutely TERRIFIED of spiders. And I always count on Friso to rescue me. How will you ever enter that room again?

Posted by: Nadine at March 29, 2007 12:08 PM

"My home office is dead to me."

Oh, my God! Cracking up.

Eek! Spiders! Multiple spiders!! Scary!

Posted by: Zandria at March 30, 2007 2:18 PM

Here's a question for ya. What happens when you flush a spider down the toilet? I just did and I saw it crawl from beneath the paper towel just as the flush began to pull it down. After the flush I saw the water move slightly and I decided it was the spider waiting for me to turn out the light and leave the bathroom so it could crawl out as soon as I turned out the light and left the room. I decided to flush the toilet a second time and leave the bathroom light on so the spider would think I was still in the room. Now 20 minutes have passed and I am wondering if the spider was flushed out to sea or if it's waiting around in the pipes for an opportune time to escape the cold water and come get me. I wonder if fairly big spiders can survive a double flush and whether two flushes is enough to push the spider completely through the plumbing and out to the sewer? Please let me know what you think as soon as possible so I can quit using the upstairs bathroom and start using the one downstairs again. It is my thinking I probably should have stepped on it but I really didn't want to kill it and I was really hoping two good flushes would send it away to a happy new life in another realm. Please let me know what you think. Thanks.

Posted by: Jancee at October 3, 2007 4:13 AM

Aw I love spiders. They are adorable and actually won't hurt you unless you pose a threat. You are just being a wuss. Like one other person said, just man up. If those are baby spiders as it sounds, just put them in a jar and release them into the wild (like your backyard or something).

And FYI, some of the smaller house spiders are just as deadly as some tarantulas. And some tarantulas are not deadly at all. They do make great pets.

Posted by: Jess at August 18, 2008 11:09 PM