Tuesday, April 24, 2007

The Itsy-Bitsy Spider


THIS (actual size) was in my kitchen this morning. There I was happily puttering around the kitchen; serving cereal, putting away milk, making lunches - when all the while, THAT was there, waiting...

As I tucked Emily's lunch into her pink backpack, I noticed something move on the wall right by my left hand. I stepped back and saw the Biggest Spider of my LIFE.


I screamed and the kids screamed. I made Sydney get the Raid while I made sure the spider didn't sneak away. But the spider was so fast. He ran behind a cupboard, so I screamed and pulled out the cupboard and sprayed him.

He moved in such an interesting way, kind of bobbing his body as his long slender legs moved him steadily along. He was, seriously, the size of a rice cake (not the mini kind.) If he was resting on a naval orange, his long legs would have almost met at the bottom.

He started across the tile, so I sprayed him some more, and screamed. He seemed to be slowing down, so when he climbed up the bullentin board I thought it might be best if I just carried him outside (it is earth day, isn't it?) But as I moved the bulletin board he started his muppet walk right toward me, so I screamed and set him down.

As I was screaming, I was hoping that one of those guys doing pushups in the field out our back gate (one, hup, two, hup...) would notice and come rescue me. No such luck.

The Raid didn't do much to slow down that spider and he ran to hide behind the kitchen garbage can. I left a puddle of raid there, which he swam through on his way back toward the cupboard. I hefted a box at him (with a scream thrown in for good luck) but even covered in raid he was able to dodge and run. It was time to head to school, but I could NOT leave that spider there, so I did what I knew I should have done to start with. I screamed, and I stepped on him.


My heart was racing! After I dropped off the kids I ran my fasted 3miles ever!

So, I told my friend Heidi about the SPIDER and she said - you know they get bigger, and you have to be careful stepping on those spiders, because they can jump.... great....

She also told me that in Hawaii they are called Cane Spiders, because they are often found in sugar cane fields.

Wikipedia says not to worry, they rarely bite and almost never inject venom (which luckily does not cause long term problems.)

Wikipedia also says that Cane Spiders

are welcomed in many homes as they feed on pests such as cockroaches and silverfish. Their exceptional agility and speed, as well as their ability to contort and squeeze through tight spaces, give them a strong advantage both in capturing prey and evading predators. They feed at night, which is another thing that makes them frightening to humans.

Maybe I should have given him a lai, and a kiss on the cheek and invited him to dine on the cockroach that John spotted earier in the morning...

Ah, paradise! Wanna come for a visit?


marallyn ben moshe said...

oy...i would have screamed too...yukkkkk...where the dickens do you live??? here in jerusalem we only have terrorists...and they make me scream and cry

Toni said...

Ewww! Get a cat- that should kill it.

Donna Boucher said...

Is the worst thing I have ever seen about Hawaii.

Even in Paradise.
Ya gotta deal with scary spiders.

Keep reminding yourself that they will eat the other bugs...and that Cane spiders are your friends!

Think Charlotte.

Mary said...

Marallyn is right, terrorists trump spiders, any day.

Given that, I would have SCREAMED the whole time too! AAAAAAAAA

Army Wife said...

OK I found you via my comments....frickin funny. You killed me this morning. Made me laugh and cough and laugh and cough!! I loved this..

oh and the notes to yourself!!

txmommy said...

aaaahhhhh! yuck!!

No Cool Story said...

"...he started his muppet walk right toward me...."

Ok see, that's a deal breaker for me.
I am so gald I didn't see all this go down, I'd still be screaming.

Amanda said...

Terrorists are scary in their own right, that is to be sure. But Spiders the size of a rice cake. That is totally scary too. I would've screamed too. I don't think I could've squished him. I probably would have been too scared. Ahhhhhhhh!!!

ps. Didn't you say you have geckos in your house that help control the bug population? I would much rather have gecko's than those spiders.

Sketchy said...

Oh Maheckma! And here I was thinking you had such a cushy life there in Hawaii.

nikko said...

Oh my. I would have done more than screamed... ;o)

Deanne said...

Oh man, this is not the way for me to start out my morning......pictures and stories of super creepy, muppet jumping spiders! I can't tell you how much I was cringing while I read this. I'm thinking you need to get rid of the Raid and get a gallon size jug of Ortho Home Defense (it's awesome!!!)

By the way....Mae has a book of animals and creatures and in the back it has a small picture of what is called a 'happy face spider'. It is known to live in Hawaii and the markings on its back resembles a smiley face. I don't think I could handle a spider 'smiling' at me. Ewe!

Mary said...

It's me again! I keep cracking up about this. I have seen you freak out over little moths, so the image of you attacking a spider the size of a big rice cake is hilarious!

Last summer we had wasps that hung out in the window of our bedroom and every time I killed one of those, I had to use one of Randy's big shoes to squish it while screaming and jumping and then having heart palpitations forever after it. Lindsey would say, "Okay mama?" all concerned.

Sorry, that's all :)

wendy said...

How fun to wake up to so many comments!

Marallyn - we are in Hawaii.

Donna - a nice big bug eating spider in the barn - yes. A big cgi inspiring spider in my kitchen. - Aaaaaaa!

Amanda - I haven't seen a gecko in a while...

Deanne - I am not getting close enough to a spider to check out it's happy face. Nope. no way!

Mary - as we were walking to school this morning a moth tried to fly up my nose. I jumped around like a crazy person. But I think wasps are even scarier - they can sting you and call their friends to come over and help.

Jessica said...

I would have freaked out as well, as big as a rice cake! Sheesh! I have had similar experiences with killing huge Texas cockroaches (they give me nightmares), but at least they eventually die with the Raid so I don't have to have ANY bodily contact with them whatsoever. I either just leave the grotesque carcass for my husband to clean up or I suck it up with a vacuum cleaner.
You are a brave woman to smash it with your foot!
I am like you though, once I see a scary bug in my house, I have to know it is dead. I can't go on wondering where it could be making a little home and inviting over family to stay. EEK!

Elizabeth-W said...

I can't even fathom that thing in my home!! I literally got shivers when I saw it. Just showed it to my 3 year old and she got super-big eyes.
I asked her what she would do if she a spider that big in our house.
She said, Does it bite? I said yes and she said she'd run away. I said, what if it didn't? and she said she'd be nice to it. Ahhh, she says so now....But I think if she were confronted, she'd scream like a 40 year old woman.

Deanne said...

check out this link on the 'Hawaiian Happy Face Spider'! (Hawaii....it's a nice place to visit...) :)


wendy said...

elizabeth - screamin' like a 40 year old woman. That's got a nice ring to it, don't you think?

Deanne - that was an interesting site. And though I'm impressed that the smiling spider raises it's own babies I still don't wanna see one!

Amber said...

Wow, talk about a new definition of paradise! I had a cockroach surface on my body after a shower when I was in Israel. I still shudder to think about it.

As for my Denver Post project, very few newpapapers are doing it so if I were you I'd jump in now while the getting is good.

We are modeling our new site after Indy Moms http://www.indymoms.com/ with a blog like Mama Drama in Houston. I'm meeting with the designer in a few weeks and can't wait to get the ball rolling!

Steph said...

Oh I am laughing and laughing at your post. Excellent writing and imagery, I could totally see what was happening in my head!

I can handle nearly all critters except for mice and crunchy bugs. It looks like this spider would crunch, did it? Bleeeecccch. I imagine cleaning up after the moosh would have been nasty.
I wonder what the soldiers doing pushups thought was going on in your house? hee hee.

wendy said...

Amber - I've been reading through Indy moms and MamaDrama and I'm fascinated. I have more questions, but I don't want to be a pest...

Steph - The crunch was one reason I didn't step on him at first. But I have to say that I did not hear of feel a crunch, but I was screaming when I did it! I have a feeling they couldn't actually hear us - they didn't seem to look up or anything as we walked past. Or if they did notice they just figured I was yet another crazy military wife.

Terina said...

are you sure this thing will eat fleas?? cause even if it did, i don't think i would want that in my house. i would be screaming or sitting in the other room taking deep breaths and trying to think of what i could do to make it disappear.
now that i know those things are in hawaii, i'm not sure if we want to be posted there.....

orchard_girl said...

I told Rick you had a run in with a Cane Spider. He said, yeah those things are huge, just shoo it outside with a broom. He also laughed when I said you used a whole can of raid and it didn't kill it, said they were to big for the raid.

I also know what Da Kine means, besides the sports outfitters here in HR. When Rick talks about his mission to HI, he gets a cool local bra accent.

wendy said...

terina - I'm not sure about the fleas, actually, but I don't see why not. He doesn't look like a picky spider. My neighbor just saw one by her door. She said that she has lived here 5 years and has never seen them before today. Creepy.

Heather - hush, will you, I gotta keep that bit of info quiet until Friday. I can imagine Rick over here hanging with da bruddahs.

Tori :) said...

OMG!!! AAAAHHH!!! I seriously feel nauseous after looking at that picture. Eew. I have the heebie jeebies (or whatever they're called.)