Alien Goo and Giant Spiders

20Sep08

A very dear friend came to visit this week, using us as a crash pad on the way to and from a sponsored walk she was doing – 60k along the South Downs in 4 days – with a group of old college friends. Given they’re all in their sixties, this is no mean feat! Anyway, she’d been up to London shopping before she came to us (any excuse), so she left some of her goodies with us. The kids raided the spare room so I had to go in set things straight . . . and discovered a tin of “Callaloo”. What is it? It looks revolting, a sludgy, green alien goo. I wonder if the fact that it has “loo” in its name is relevant? Why has she bought it? What was she thinking? It surely does not look like an appetising treat to test and investigate . . . very, very strange. I shall wait for her to come back and quiz her on it.

We have another visitor this week as well. The biggest spider I have ever seen in my entire life has taken up residence in our bathroom. Not quietly, in a corner, out of the way and minding its own business. No, that would be far too helpful. This monster appears to KNOW I am phobic and has taken up residence DIRECTLY above the door. One of things I am most terrified of is giant spiders dropping on me . . . I just can’t bear the thought of those evil leggy predator alien monstrosities on me. Ewwwwwwwwww. I’ve gone all squirmy and shivery just thinking about it. I think it’s because they are such alien predators that they are so scary – there’s no level with which you can identify with a spider, and there’s no way you can communicate with or even understand why it does what it does, and if it has a consciousness (one assumes so), on what level it operates. And that’s probably far too much speculation. There are any number of critters (including actual alien predators) that come under my ‘alien predator’ phobia. Most of them are probably fairly innocuous – assorted various bugs and sea-nasties for the most part – but they creep me out big time. 

Desperate not to pass my phobias onto the children, I have trained myself to “deal” with either the very small ones (ignore them, mostly they will go away), and the spindly idiot ones (correctly named the daddy-long-legs spider I believe) are quickly dealt with via a hoover. (Now I’ve read the link, perhaps I should have left them – it appears they eat the big hairy ones!). This strategy seems to have worked – the children are fascinated by spiders, so we ended up having to let a nest of the spindly ones survive the hoover holocaust so they could watch the babies develop (about half of them got eaten by the other half). We also have a regular spider-watch in the garden – at this time of year there are some fabulous webs and we’ve had to stop everything to watch said garden spiders catching and wrapping prey. I think the fact that they catch flies is marvellous. I just wish they could do it without being so predator-y about it.

But I digress.

This monstrosity of a spider is just sitting there, right above my bathroom door. And it’s waiting. Waiting for me to walk right under it and then it’s going to drop on me. And then all my phobia-defeating self-training will go right out of the window and I will have the heebie-geebies right there on the spot. (Probably, everyone else in the house will laugh at me).

How do I know this?

It’s happened before.

It must be 15 years or so ago now . . . we were round at a friends house after a big night out, and everyone was crashed in the living room. A giant spider appeared and starting creeping around the picture rail . . . heading for my chair. I don’t trust spiders. They want to drop on me. So I made the guy sitting in the chair in the opposite corner swap with me. Everyone laughed at me for being such a wuss. Anyway, spider didn’t fall and kept on around the room . . . heading for the corner I was now sitting in. It got to 4 feet of me and I made the guy swap back, even in the face of extreme mockery from everyone else in the room. Still, the spider did not fall. On it went again, round the picture rail, not very fast, but making steady progress. Of course, everyone’s watching it now, waiting to see how long this entertainment is going to last, because I’m pretty much hysterical at this point (everyone else is hysterical with laughter, but there you go). Back it comes again, and again we swap chairs, and again everyone else in the room thinks I’m a lunatic, because of course the spider won’t fall – because a) they have sticky legs so they can’t fall, and b) it hasn’t yet. Uh-huh. So, spider reaches corner, guy is looking up, and just as he’s saying ‘see, I told you it wouldn’t fall’, down it comes – SPLAT – right on his face. He leaps out of the chair like his ass is on fire, screaming (!), spider goes flying (who knows where), and every girl in the room runs screeching from it (including me). Needless to say, I couldn’t resist an “I told you so”, even though I know they’re not helpful. So, I don’t trust spiders, and I wish this one would go away. I’d try hoovering it, but I’m afraid it’s so big that it wouldn’t actually get sucked up and would come running up the hose to get me. Eeep.

Please go away, o spider.

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One Response to “Alien Goo and Giant Spiders”


  1. 1 Faffing about . . . « A Mingled Yarn

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