Two Bug Stories

I was watching footage today at my job. In it, a guy thought he had a spider on him, another person assured him that he did not. The fellow said that if he had indeed had a spider on him he would have cried.

This spurred a couple bug memories of mine that might make you cringe or laugh or some combination of the two.

1) This is a shortie but sweetie. And it has a happy ending.

One night I was taking out the trash as I'm known to do. I went around the front of the house instead of the back, totally randomly. I think my play-shoes were out front.

Later I had some more recycling to take out, I went around back this time. I just happened to pop my phone's light on when I neared the trash cans. Thankfully I had because my white beam illuminated one of the largest spider webs that I had ever seen (it still holds the record). Accompanying her web was a very large, dark colored spider as well. It was about 9 feet in the air so I didn't get a good look at her. I'm not sure her species, but her impressive web spanned from the side of my house's wall to the fence, about 7 feet I'd guess. Sadly, it did not have a message for me or any farmers woven into it...

I left the recycling there to be put in the receptacle another time. I could deal with that in the light of day.

Can you imagine if I had waltzed into that web, no light, hands full of garbage bags? The spider would have fallen from her perch probably onto my face, the silky strings of the webbing would have entombed me, and I would have had no choice but to light myself on fire. But it didn't and I didn't, so that's the happy ending.

2) Not so short, not as happy of an ending. 

One night I came in from jogging, turned off the front porch light, and went to grab my pajamas so I could shower and change. As I was heading to the bathroom from the bedroom I saw a dark, standard comb-sized object on a bare white wall. It was dark in the room so I wasn't sure if it was a shadow or my imagination, or what. When I flipped on the light though I saw a very large roach of some sort, chillaxin' on my front room's wall.

I'm not sure if I mentioned this in the first story, but bugs are a thing for me. I wouldn't call them a phobia of mine, but they live in the same neighborhood as a phobia if you get what I mean. And now I was faced with a choice: let this humongous, uninvited guest exist in my house, or duel the behemoth.

Naturally, I called my wife into the room. Thankfully my kids were asleep or they would have lost some respect for their father because of how terrified I was. My wife assured me that yes, this was MY problem, and good luck with it. As progressive as we are with our gender roles, bug wrangling still falls under my jurisdiction.

I enlisted my wife to make sure the bug didn't move, then I geared up. It was like an 80s movie montage but instead of guns and ammo and camo headbands I donned crocs, a hoodie, and one of those wooden paddles you take to the beach to bop around a bouncy ball in the sand. I pulled the ties of the hood tight and made bunny ears. I was ready for battle. (For some reason I neglected to put on pants though, so I was fully clothed except for my long, white legs clad in grey boxer briefs.)

Well we quickly learned that this particular breed of roach can fly... as it flew into our kitchen and hid which caused me even more emotional distress. Being able to see it in my house was bad enough, but knowing it was there and NOT being able to see it? That's a nightmare, like I've literally had nightmares like that.

But the creepy crawly (fly-y?) friend did not play hide and seek for too long, it reappeared on the ceiling of the kitchen. I looked for a way out. Could I suck it into the vacuum? Would it fly out the back door? No. I. Just. Had. To. Get. It. Out.

I worked up my nerve, I ran over, and paddled it off the ceiling, then I paddled it towards the sliding back door, then I paddled it off into the night. My heart was racing, I was sweating, but I was triumphant. My wife and I broke down in laughter.

I looked like a weirdo in my hoodie and undies and crocs. We had just been through a traumatic couple of minutes. But actually, in a week where we had been overworked and we had under-slept, it had been an almost "fun" bonding time. We had problem solved and felt big emotions together. And we were so glad it was over.

My theory is that the interloper had hitched a piggy back ride when I had come inside after my jog. And still, to this moment, the thought of it attaching itself to my shirt and riding into my house still gives me the itchy-willies.

The moral of those two stories? Hey, I never said there was one, I'm not a role model, ok? Get off my back.