You would think that after seven years, my passion for smashing and killing anything and everything even remotely resembling a spider would not come as a surprise to Nathan. I am deathly afraid of spiders, this he knows. I insist they all be smashed, vacuumed, and/or flushed down the toilet. He knows this too. Yet somehow, I still managed to catch him off guard with my reaction to a spider last night.
As I said, I hate spiders. They scare me. A lot. In elementary school, I watched part of Arachnophobia at my friend Andrea’s house. (Her parents told us we were not allowed to watch it. Being fourth grade geniuses, we did not listen.) If that wasn’t enough to scare me sleepless, I then read a “fun fact” in my math book that said the average human eats eight spiders a year in their sleep. What?!?! Our old house seemed to be a breeding ground for giant house spiders, and this place is not much better. The spiders seem to know which nights I am home alone, and choose to come out at that time. I often spend several minutes staring at the spider in a paralyzed fear before I can work up the courage to get close enough to smash it.
So last night. I was getting ready for bed, so we both went upstairs. I walked down the hall and into our bedroom. A minute later, Nathan walked up and stopped dead in his tracks in the middle of the hallway, staring at the wall above the bedroom door. “How on earth did you miss that spider?” he asked me.
I really had no idea. Normally I am on pretty high alert for spiders (and also mice and and suspicious neighbors – you have to watch your back around here). I wondered what I had missed. In my head, I pictured a spider as big as my fist, and decided it would be best to sit safely on top of my bed while Nathan dealt with The Situation. “I don’t know, but get rid of it!”
Nathan pulled up a chair, and then grabbed a handful of toilet paper to smash the spider with. Then he hesitated, and said, “I think I’d rather have a shoe.”
I tossed him a shoe from my closet, and started imagining a spider the size of a small dog. He doesn’t usually ask for a shoe. Nathan smashed, and shouted, “No!” as the spider dropped to the carpet and started to scurry away.
This is where I stepped in (and apparently, shocked my husband into a hysterical laughing fit). I had to do SOMETHING. It couldn’t get away. I yelled, “I GOT IT!”, leapt off the bed, and beat the spider to death with the only weapon readily available – my water bottle.
By the time Nathan took the water bottle away from me, the spider was in a million pieces, and he was doubled over and practically crying from laughter.
I’m still not sure what was so funny, but at least I make him laugh. Maybe Nathan could explain it to you. He said he thought it was hilarious that I walk around all day with no depth perception, but put a spider in front of me and I suddenly develop a deadly (and unfortunately, only temporary) accuracy. What can I say? Different things motivate different people. I think he should be more impressed with my brave display of courage (maybe present me with some sort of medal or award?), but whatever.
I do know one thing for sure, though – that spider’s little friends will think twice before venturing out into my hallway.