March 6th, 2005


Spider Stories

They were lying in bed reading. This was several years ago, before she'd had laser eye surgery. She wasn't wearing her glasses, so she could not see much past the end of her book. She glanced at the ceiling, and saw a dark spot moving along rapidly.

She cringed. If it was large enough that she could see it without glasses, it must be some monstrously huge bug-type-thing. It was above her. "What the hell is that?"

He glanced up. "Oh, a spider."

She is always afraid of ceiling-spiders, for fear that they will drop onto her. Some years ago, she'd had a nightmare in which there were spiders swarming all over her ceiling. The dream had been vivid enough that she'd been out of her bedroom and cowering in the hallway before she'd fully woken up. It had taken her an hour before she worked up enough courage to reenter the bedroom, peer cautiously at the ceiling, and return to bed, reassuring herself that it was just a dream.

"Is it big? It looks huge. Do something about it!"

"What would you like me to do?"

"If it's convenient, capture it and set it free in the wilderness. If not, squish it."

She put on her glasses and cringed even more. It wasn't enormous, but it was the kind with a big dark torso and thick legs instead of spindly ones. That gave it more of a Scary Spider quality. She scrambled out of the bed, well out of spider-falling-range, so he could deal with the situation.


Just last week, she walked into her bathroom and exclaimed startledly, "Ack! A spider!"

"Do you need some help?" A friend called from the other room.

"Yes please." Keeping her distance, she kept an eye on the critter as it walked along the wall.

He entered the bathroom and asked patiently, "Okay where is it," as he rolled his eyes slightly.

She pulled out a kleenex and handed it to him. "Right over there."

He squished it muttering, "A waste of a perfectly good piece of kleenex."

The deed done, she thanked him and justified herself, "It's not that I'm incapable of dealing with it. When I'm here by myself, I handle my own spiders. But when there happens to be a guy around...."

"It's his job?"

"I feel he should assume responsibility for them."

"I'll have to keep that in mind if I visit again."