I don’t know what nature is trying to tell the me, but trust me, I’m listening.
Living out in the country, I’m used to a field mouse or two. While I’m not pleased when I can hear them building forts in my walls, but as long as I don’t see them we are cool.
Kinda. Sure I set traps to keep control the population. I just make my landlord empty them. I don’t deal well with the aftermath.
The one household menacing creature I cannot handle are spiders.
I can trace my arachnophobia back to childhood. I remember playing in the field of corn on the edge of my parent’s farm. My sister and I would chase each other in and out of the rows and play hide-and-go-seek.
Yet, I’ll never forget running into a huge spider web and coming face-to-face with this huge black and yellow spider. It looked like a linebacker for the Steelers.
I understand spiders serve a much needed purpose for our environment. Their purpose is to clear out insects like flies, mosquitoes and the like. I also can appreciate an intricate web on a dewy, fall morning like anyone else.
Why can’t they just stay outside?
For those of you who trap these guys with a piece of cardboard and a jar, you are a better person that I. I commend you for your spider saving skills.
I just can’t deal. For real.
For some reason, I’ve had ginormous spiders appear in my bathtub in the last several weeks. They were the size of tea cup saucers, I kid you not.
I’ve never had to deal with creatures like this in my lifetime, let alone, in bulk.
The first one I encountered, I was home alone. I know it sounds like the start of a horror movie. Believe me, I felt like I was starring in an Alfred Hitchcock film.
I drew back the shower curtain and there it was looming in the cast iron tub.
I noted the time and knew a friend was on his way home from second shift. I immediately called him, sobbing, describing the horror that was waiting at my home.
Folks, this spider was so large, even he was slightly petrified of it. For entertainment purposes, and maybe to increase the courage factor, I filmed the attack.
It wasn’t pretty for either party.
Last week, I ordered the 12 year old to get in the shower and get ready for bed. I heard a blood curdling scream from the bathroom. I thought maybe Evan had slipped and fell and injured himself.
Another spider, only bigger than the first.
Great. Now what.
It was late. I thought about calling Dad the landlord, but I try to only bother him with real emergencies like severed limbs and the like.
Finally I had to man up and take care of the arachnid invasion myself.
I first tried to subdue the critter with hot water.
I even poured a big cup of vinegar on it, hoping it would burn and melt away like the Wicked Witch of the West from the “Wizard of Oz.”
Didn’t even phase it.
Finally, I started launching all the shoes I could get my hands on at it. Troy Daily News sports editor David Fong always gives me grief about the size of my feet, so I used it to my advantage.
I stood on the edge of the tub and let my size 8 1/2 Reef sandals do the dirty work.
Finally, after four pairs of shoes, the spider was destroyed.
This whole process only took 45 minutes from scream to its Bounty paper towel body bag I made up on the spot.
I shared my tale with the landlord, who claimed he treated the basement for these pesky insects.
Yet, one week later, I found yet another one. Same type of spider. Same blood curdling scream.
This time I used my cowboy boots. Hopefully the rest of the herd got the message.
“Twin” Melanie Yingst appears weekly in the Troy Daily News. Oh, the tangled web we weave.