It was a sunny day in Pittsburgh last week and I’m driving with the window down. I spy out of the corner of my eye a SPIDER!!! Aaaaahhhh!!!!! I have an extreme fear of the creepy-crawly types. <Hell, I’m even afraid of worms…well not afraid really but they gross me the hell out.> So as I’m driving I’m trying to blow air out of my mouth onto the spider to jostle it loose so it gets dragged into the wind. I’m sure I looked like a lunatic. I don’t care….I am triumphant. Wormy 1/Spider 0
It got me to thinking about another time a spider took over my car. <For some reason, this happens a lot>. I had to be about 19 years old and I was taking dance classes at Pointe Park. My Grandfather was a cobbler. <Does anyone do this job anymore??? Wait till I tell you about the yearly “Shoe Makers Picnic”. I wish I was joking about this.>
My Grandfather was fixing a pair of tap shoes for me and I was driving over there to pick them up. I’m bebopping along, jamming out to The Cure or some such shit and hit a red light. La-Tee-Da…..”Just like heaven….”….WTF is that? I notice something across my rearview mirror. To my horror it’s a HUGE spider just splayed across the glass like he owns the place. I freak the fuck out. Like a teenage girl freak out, cause you know, I was. I start hyperventilating. I put the car in park, whip off my seatbelt and literally jump out of the car and stand there, at a red light and just scream my head off. I have no idea what to do. There isn’t room enough in the car for the both of us. Of course the light turns green and there is a line of cars behind me and no where to pull off the road. I jump back in, throw it in Drive and take off. I’ve got one eye on the road and one on the spider. That fucker better not move a muscle. I’m frantically looking for a weapon of some sort. I don’t know why, I don’t have enough balls to actually kill the thing but this is a fight or flight reflex and I’m just going for it. I’m digging in my purse and come up with a plastic tampon holder. You know, to hide your unmentionable. It’s now my only defense against the enemy. I start beating my rearview mirror like a serial killer. And what happens? That little bastard doesn’t have the decency to die. Oh no, he FALLS TO THE FLOOR!!! Pulls some tuck, duck and roll type ninja move. Now what the fuck do I do?
I’m really losing my shit now. I can’t see him and of course it feels like he is crawling up my leg every .0002 seconds. Still on my way to my grandfather’s house, I’m coming up on Carnegie Volunteer Fire Dept. SCORE! A fireman will help me….that’s like their job, right? I pull in to a screeeeching halt and jump out of the car, frantically patting myself down like I’m on fire just to make sure he’s not on me anywhere. Before I can do anything, another car comes flying in the lot behind me. This guy jumps out, he is wild eyed and has a gun in one hand and a night stick in the other <again, I wish I was making this up> and is yelling at me “WHATS THE PROBLEM, MISS!!! ARE YOU OKAY???”
I stand there in a dazed stupor. I have no idea who this guy is or where he came from. I sheepishly look to the cement and kick at an invisible pebble. I look up at him through my lashes and in an embarrassed whisper say “there’s a spider in my car”. When the reality of what I said sunk in, I think he was ready to shoot me.
What happened was, he was behind me at the red light and saw me jump out of the car and flip out. He thought I was getting raped. Oh, and he’s a cop, in an unmarked car…TeeHee….and he was now pissed. He did kill the spider though…I was really cute back then. He then proceeded to detain me, call his cop buddies to come hang out with us and wouldn’t let me leave for like 30 minutes. Picture 19 year old me, a volunteer fire dept parking lot on a main road, 3 cop cars with the lights going and 3 cops making fun of me. Apparently not a lot of crime going on in Carnegie in those days, this was the highlight of their night. Good times.
As I’ve gotten older my fear of bugs hasn’t changed but at least I haven’t been pseudo-arrested for it lately.