A spider big enough to see from the top of a flight of stairs is a spider big enough to save, or so the old saying goes.
If you say it enough times you start to believe it, which is a good thing to do when escorting said honkin’ huge arachnid out the back door of a lovely house on a large lake.
It’s a REALLY good thing to say if you are not the one who has to get near enough to aforementioned BEAST to do the escorting, which was the position I was in last week when the discovery of the KILLER was made. If memory serves, I was in the upstairs kitchen doing something productive (probably pouring a cocktail) when a shout of “Oh my GOD! Tiff, come HERE!” came up from the lower level. Thinking, as one would when a panicked yelp with one’s name attached comes roaring up a flight of stairs, that someone had been grievously injured, I rushed to the top of the stairs, where the Things were pointing and yelling ‘look at the spider, Mom! It’s HUGE!”
The noise that came out of me as I backed away as though shot from a cannon was the source of much jocularity later. Though it very likely sounded like I was gurgling through a half-decapitation, the real reason for my insensible garbling is of course that I HATE SPIDERS WITH A PASSION because THEY ARE CREEPY and are ALL OUT TO GET IN MY HAIR.
Brave Biff, who actually hates spiders more than I do, came through as the hero of the day by capturing the blasted demon under a drinking glass, then sliding a Tupperware lid under the vile creature, trapping it in a wee terrarium before taking it out to the yard to let it go. Later he revealed that the release was determined to be the best way to go because a spider the size of a baby’s head would leave a mighty gooey splat indeed on the carpet if utter destruction had been the chosen path.
He is a smartie like that. I would have gone for the crunchy ‘smoosh’ as pure terror-induced reflex.
But only if I’d been wearing shoes.
The snake story is a pretty good one too. Last Monday or Tuesday night I was returning to my Mom’s rental house alone in the near-dark. I saw a black snake slide across the patio in front of me, slipping into the grass as neat as you please. Being that I don’t mind snakes at all (because they’re not trying to get in my HAIR!), I though nothing of it and mentioned it to nobody.
Little did I know that the snake was a persistent bugger, and that two days later my nephews would come a-tearing out the house down to the dock yelling something about there being a snake in the house.
The younger nephew was the first to see it, and thinking it was a prank he kicked the damned thing, causing it to begin a-slithering. It was at that point that the mad escape was made.
Not long after, their dad (my younger brother) and the older nephew went hunting while certain people (HI MOM!) shivered in abject fear down on the dock. It wasn’t long before brother and youngun returned to the dock, a lacrosse stick handily holding the dismembered corpse of a 3-foot-long blacksnake.
Normally, blacksnakes are ones you’d like to have around, being as how they eat icky crap like mice and rats, but as my brother put it ‘it ceased having value once it was in my house’ and thus it was struck mightily about the head with the blunt end of the lacrosse stick before having its head sawn off with a steak knife.
My Mom needed an escort for the next few days to move farther than the living room, such was her fear. Good thing she’s got that pacemaker now, huh?
(I love you Mom, and am glad you didn’t keel over from the excitement!)
And then there was the barfing.
Last Thursday morning I woke up with a killer headache, which is unusual even if I’ve partied on down the night before (stick to one drink that’s low in sugar content kids!). I could have attributed it to a migraine, but I didn’t have any aura and I could walk properly.
Also, about 30 minutes after awakening, it because clear that I was soon to puke.
I hate puking.
Hate or no, I did it anyway. Twice. Both times ‘tweren’t nothing coming up but the water I was drinking, and both times I thought for sure I was going to die by urp-aspiration. Is it just me, or can other people simply not catch a breath while vomiting? I was shedding tears from the effort, coughing and spluttering, breathing as hard as if I’d just run a mile once the wracking waves of nausea passed. It was...miserable.
Miserable, but blessedly short-lived. I took a 4-hour nap after Biff, the absolute wonder that he is, went out and got some Alka-Seltzer and Excedrin, the second dose of which I managed to keep down. While my guts didn’t’ feel ‘right’ for two days afterward, there was no more cataclysmic peristaltic activity.
The semi-sweet icing on the cake of blech is that I have someone to blame, because Thing 2 had not been feeling well the day before. He made me sick on vacation, the ingrate, and didn’t even have the sensitivity to barf himself. Oh no, HE got away with some quiet time in his room on a sunny Wednesday afternoon, while his poor suffering mama was horking her guts up at 5 a.m. the very next day
And there ya go. Nearly a thousand words on the ‘not so great stuff that happened on my summer vacation.’ Hope you enjoyed. Tiff out.