After a decent trip to TJ Maxx, including the score of a new pair of jeans to replace the ones that nearly fell off my ass at the mall last weekend , I quickly downed an Iced Venti Latte and picked up my daughter from school. She proceeded to tell me about her day, and the field trip she went on to find and identify spiders. She is not skittish about spiders or snakes or creepy crawlies, which I admire. She was excited about seeing a “European spider,” a “black wolf spider,” and insisted that she shook hands with a tarantula. I suppose that is possible. I asked her if all her classmates shook hands with the tarantula, and she said no, some kids thought it would jump on them and suck their blood out. Now that would’ve made for an eventful 1st grade jaunt.

This week, I was rather stunned to read about a giant Australian spider, which apparently caught and nommed on a bird. At first I thought the bastard had bagged himself a chicken, but it turned out to be a finch:


Nonetheless, LOOK AT THE SIZE OF THAT THING! HOLY SHIT! Like my daughter, I too am not particularly bugged by spiders, but I tell you WHAT: if one of those things were in my house, I would scream the most bloodcurdling scream heard outside of a Z-grade horror movie, and possibly burn down my entire house to get rid of it. I think all rational thought would leave me. Bird-eatin’ bug, GIMME A DAMN BREAK! That ain’t right.

The worst bugs I ever had to deal with were from when I lived in Arizona. Deserts make for some unpleasant creatures, and I remember when I had to face down my first black widow spider. There it was, just sitting there on the wall by the kitchen, all evil and black and spidery. Well, I thought. Damn. OK. Damn. Shit. Shit. OK. Hmm. Shit. I got a book and slammed it on the nasty thing and smooshed it until I felt that there was no chance it could be functional. I think I stood there for about 5 minutes, afraid to take the book off the wall and deal with the spider remnants. But all was well, I had indeed killed it, although I think I threw the book away. Book-eatin’ bug.

Worse than that was when I was alone in the apartment, and some GIANT BLACK WASP THING got in. OH CRAP. It was a good four inches long, and wasps, as we know, are MEAN AND SURLY. This was no regular Wisconsin wasp; this Arizona asshole was surely one from the pit of hell. It flew about, making an ugly awful sound, and I dared not take my eye off it. WHAT THE HELL WAS I GONNA DO?

I called my boyfriend in a panic. WAAAHHH MUH MUH MUH BLAH BLAH BLAH WASP WAAAAAAA, was the gist of my communication to him. He kindly and thoughtfully told me that I MUST KILL IT so it didn’t sting the cats. AW MAN! THE HELL! AWWW! What on earth was I gonna kill a giant wasp with?? I kept him on the phone while I secured the cats into the bathroom, and looked around desperately for something to bring total death to this shitpile bug. I ended up going for a two-pronged approach.

On top of the refrigerator, was a novelty item that I had got at a Stuckey’s somewhere in Texas a couple of years before: the Giant Texas Fly Swatter. It was about three feet long, and comically absurd. This would hopefully reach the awful creature so I could beat it to death. In my other hand was a giant canister of hair spray. I figured if I just mercilessly emptied the can on the fucker, it would immobilize or confuse him in beauty product finality. My boyfriend I believe was peeing his pants laughing over the phone at this point.

There it was, poised like a miserable black-winged turd on the ceiling over the couch. It was a face-off. Do or die. I trembled as I stood on a chair, bending forward. It had to be one damn good strike with the Giant Texas Fly Swatter, I thought, or the thing would swoop down and sting my eyeball or something. OK. HERE’S ONE FOR THE CATS, YOU PIECE OF DUNG!

WWWWWHAPP! I hit it as hard as I could, screaming and cringing at the same time. It fell…behind the couch. OH NO. NO NO NO. I could not see it. I picked up the phone and explained the bad turn of events. YOU HAVE TO GO BACK THERE AND KILL IT!, my boyfriend exhorted, with a mix of hilarity and concern. AWWW!, I said. I got my can of hairspray and unraveled a roll of paper towels. Again, a decisive move was utterly necessary: I would have to move the couch quickly and BE READY. I put the phone down again. I think by this time there were about 10 people on the line listening to the drama unfold.

I got on my knees. GO! I practically threw the couch aside (to be fair it was a shitty foam deal that weighed about 10 pounds), and THERE IT WAS, TWITCHING! AAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH!!!!! I took the spray and pressed down on the nozzle as hard as I could and the wasp seemed UNHAPPY ABOUT IT. DRINK THIS IN, CREEP! After a few seconds of lacquering, I took the wad of paper towels and pressed down with all my weight, hearing the crack of its nasty body. AAAAAAAA!, I went. HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!, I could hear from the phone a few feet away.

I got back on the phone. I KILLED IT!, I said, exhausted. NOOOO, my boyfriend said, YOU HAVE TO FLUSH IT DOWN THE TOILET!

WHAAA???? AWWWW! I took a few moments to collect myself, gathered up the wad of hopefully very dead wasp and paper towels, ran to the bathroom, let the whining cats out, threw the paper in the toilet, slammed the lid down, and flushed. The horror of the Big Bad Wasp was over.

So, maybe I would not be so freaked out by the Giant Bird Eating Spider. Maybe I would just grab some bath towels and go all Italian grape stomper on it. Provided my daughter wasn’t having a tea party with it already.