Friday, January 20, 2012

Schrödinger's Spider

The Altoids box of spidery doom!

In this box there is a spider.  The spider could be alive or dead but the only way to actually know what state it is in would be to open the box to find out.  Until that happens the spider can be thought of as being both alive and dead.  Which is far more preferable at this point to me than opening the box and finding it to be still alive because if that spider is alive it is going to attack me like a rabid rottweiler!

Here's the thing.  I have something of a complex and layered relationship with spiders.  I really love and respect them for their ecological niche - killing things like flies and mosquitoes that I so passionately despise.  I think having spiders in the garden is great for that very reason.  In fact, as a child I used to catch grasshoppers and throw them into spider nets just to watch them feed.  I think spiders are totally cool.  However ALL of that changes when they come inside the house.  Especially if they come into my bedroom.  When that happens I lose my shit.  I'm not proud of that fact but that iss never going to change.

Look there are exceptions.  I don't care if there's a Daddy Long Legs in my room.  Those guys are cool, welcome even.  The worst thing about having a Daddy Long Legs in your room is that it means that the cleaning lady is totally ignoring you on the whole "dusting" thing.  But like I said, I don't mind that much since they are totally harmless except to small annoying insects.  Therefore any Daddy Long Legs is welcome in my room.

So last night I'm getting ready for bed and I hit what feels like a tripwire.  Suddenly I feel like I'm covered in pieces of sticky string which I quickly realise is not string but web and not your average thickness for spiderweb so clearly not something as innocuous as Daddy Long Legs webbing.  Does anyone else ever have that feeling when they've hit a spiderweb that there is a spider on them?  I do!  So I spend some frantic minutes in front of the mirror checking  to see if I have a spider on me.  I didn't.  Just some really strong webbing that felt like it stayed on me even after I removed it.  In fact I kind of still feel it on me right now.  Spiders just make me feel violated like that.  Alright so after I made sure there is no spider on me I turn around and look up and see this on my bedroom wall:

At which point my rational mind shut down and the only voice left inside my head was just screaming a stream of profanity.  As I'm writing this now I have deep shame and regret for what happened next but honestly I don't think there is any way it could have played out differently.  On some level I know that these spiders offer no threat to humans (I think) but on every other level I was going "AAAAAAHH FUCK there is no fucking way I'm fucking sharing my fucking room with that fucking spider!!"  OK I also regret my unimaginative use of expletives but once adrenaline takes over the poetry in me dies.  Like I said, I'm proud of none of this.  So I ran to get the Raid with the alleged "Fast Killing Action" which mostly just seemed to make it angry.  There was no fast killing happening, that was for damn sure!  Eventually the spider ended up convulsing towards my heap of laundry and shoes (you are probably judging me by now anyway so whatever) and I realised I had to dispose of this spider before it crawled in somewhere we would both regret.  And by we I mean me. 
Raid, you have failed me for the last time!!

So I got some pliers and tried to pick it up at which point the spider levitated!  Again, rationally I know that it probably just went up a bit of its webbing but at that point it seemed more like that spider defied the laws of gravity to lunge at my neck!  At which point trying to get it out of the window was no longer an option for me and so I grabbed the nearest container I could find and maneuvered it in there before it could challenge the laws of physics again to attack me.  I refuse to live in an anime!

And that is how I ended up with a dead-alive spider in a box.  And I think I'm OK with never knowing whether it's alive or dead.  I'm willing to live with that mystery so perhaps I will just go bury it somewhere...


Ali said...

Ha ha ha! This made me laugh out loud! You could take the box outside and open it there? But make sure you do it far from home, and spin it around a few times first, so the spider's disoriented and can't follow you back for revenge.

My friend and I once trapped a Parktown prawn under a bowl in the hope that it would die, but when we came back in the morning, it was gone. I bet it's still looking for us. :/

GumbyTheCat said...

Raid works best on flying insects, I've found. Unfortunately, when used on spiders, it tends to transform them into violent and bloodthirsty fanged beasts the size of badgers. Rabid badgers. On their period. With flames coming out of their mouths.

Have a nice day!

Eugene said...

@Ali - I don't know about that plan, what if it's some kind of homing spider?? At least this way I know exactly where it is and I don't have to wonder if it's out there plotting spidery revenge! I hear you on the cockroach thing though, I doubleplus megahate cockroaches! It's clear to me now why you went to study in a different hemisphere!

@Gumby - first off, thanks for that image, it will definitely not haunt my dreams and secondly, no Raid does not work well on flying insects either! I used it on a moth the other day and it just turned into a crazy kamikaze and kept circling the room trying to dive bomb me!