Monday, August 28, 2006

Spiders, Part I

A couple nights ago, there was a massive spider on my wall, right above my bed. My eyes widened and I backed away.

I offered to spray it with spider-killer and Lavish said that I couldn't because it would make our room smell. She told me to smash it. I couldn't. "I can't," I told her. I'm terribly afraid of spiders. She tried to talk me into killing it by making it sound like it was simple. But I still couldn't do it. Since it was such a simple thing for her, I suggested she kill it. "It's on your wall," she said.

So we tried to talk our other sister (visiting for the weekend) into killing it. "Here's what I am willing to do: Give me a BIG piece of Tupperware, and a BIG piece of cardboard..." She went to look for suitable trapping material, and found one of our roommates (who had just returned from a long camping trip).
"T, are you afraid of spiders?"
"No." (She wasn't. I bet she catches spiders with her bare hands, just for fun.)
"If you'll kill this one, you'll be my hero forever."

My sister tried to warn her about the size of the monster that was occupying my wall, and roommate didn't even care. She probably thought my sister was exaggerating. The roommate came into our room and said, "Holy crap, that is huge." And then she smashed it with a little piece of tissue. And that was the end of it.

I started wondering: why am I so afraid of spiders?! Bees and june bugs elicit similar reactions.

The classic reasons that people are not supposed to be afraid of spiders are:
1. They're small. (But so are many dangerous pathogens...)
2. They're more afraid of us than we are of them. (I'm not so sure about this one. How can something that simple know to be afraid of me? Also, many small dogs act like they're bigger than they are. Chihuahuas bark at big dogs all the time.)
3. Spiders have never hurt me. (That I know of.)

But to some degree, these things are true. It would therefore be logical to decide that I'm not afraid of spiders. Too bad it isn't that simple.

I've figured this out, though. The reason I am afraid of spiders is because they have superpowers. Consider these examples:
  • They walk up walls.
  • They have extra limbs. (Note: Octopuses also have extra limbs, and they are equally scary. In movies, they are virtually impossible to defeat.)
  • They have eyes that face different directions. Which equates to special vision power.
  • They can fly. (Not true of all spiders, because technically if they fly, they're not spiders. However, there are some insects that look quite a bit like spiders that do fly. Also, this reason is especially poignant when it comes to fear of bees and june bugs.)
  • They hang in mid air.
  • They disappear and reappear, which gives them the element of surprise.
  • They are armed and dangerous, sort of. I've heard that some spiders have 1000s of tiny teeth, and are poisonous. (Just, their mouths are too small to be able to bite us.) (Bees have a stinger, which means they're always armed, which puts them on the offensive.)

And with so many convincing reasons, it's no wonder that spiders terrify me.


Optimistic. said...

Speaking of spiders, I found a mondo dead spider while I was sweeping up one of my buildings at work. I was impressed at its sheer size. Wow.

Also, I think it would be really funny if we spelled "spider" the same way British people spell words like "metre" and "litre." Spidre. Awesome.

Tolkien Boy said...

I found a two-incher in my bed today. This is not the first spider that has attempted to have sex with me, as my blog attests.

Lindsay said...

Eeww...I'm with you...spiders are horrible.

erin said...

I hate spiders. One was crawling out of my side-view mirror on the driver's side yesterday. I got out the passenger-side door instead.

Oh and my younger sister would kill spiders and chase me around the house with the dead spider. She was mean.

flippin said...

I'm having bigger problems with the other arachnids in my bed. Danged dust mites. I hate 'em. Also, thanks for your comment. It made me happy.