Thursday, August 17, 2017

Kiss of the Spider-Killing Woman

I loathe bugs. All bugs. I don't even like Lady Bugs, and they're cute. (Although sometimes we have an invasion of them--and that's just icky.)

During the winter, I seem to kill a lot of white spiders that hang around my kitchen and I only notice when I'm about to make a pot of tea. It gets worse with spring and fall ande there's lots of screaming and the fly swatter gets hard use. (BTW, I never use poison to kill bugs. Just swats and my shoes.)

I've often referred to my family's summer cottage as "bug haven." Any time you're near water, there are sure to be BUGS--ad especially spiders. Some I can deal with. The very delicate Daddy Long Legs usually stay in the corners of the bathroom or the enclosed porch. If they don't bother, then I won't bother them.

A week or so ago, scores of baby spiders hatched and I must have killed 20 or 30 of them that walked across my desk and/or computer screen. Never saw this before, but hope this means that, since I encountered and killed them at such an early age, in the long run there will be for less of the little black-and-white spiders that seem to live in that room. (They usually stay away from me, too.)

Last Wednesday, while I was working on the computer, I saw a some kind of icky bug with an inch-long ant-like body with long brown wings get caught up in a web on the outside of my porch window. As I mentioned, I loathe bugs, but I felt sorry for that winged creature when Mr. Fat-bodied brown spider came out of nowhere and attacked said bug, wrapping it in a cocoon of webs. I looked away for a few seconds, but by the time I looked back, Mr. Spider had dragged his prey away for what he probably considered a delicious meal. (*Shudder*)

And then there are the fat, juicy-bodied black spiders who RUN-VERY-FAST. Not only do they RUN-VERY-FAST, but they have excellent hearing. For example, I was busy editing the first draft of Victoria Square Mystery #5 (Yule Be Dead), when I spied a particularly HUGE--Hagrid-sized-- version of an icky black spider. I started screaming (Mr. L is glad not to be around when this happens) VERY LOUDLY, and Mr. Icky panicked while I was panicking. He was on the wall near my bookshelf, a particularly tricky area to get to. And while I was screaming and slapping at him with the swatter I keep in my office for just such emergencies, he escaped underneath the space between the baseboard and the carpet. I read where bugs (maybe even spiders) don't like vinegar water, so I grabbed my squirt bottle (which also lives in my office) and squirted the corner like crazy, disturbing a Daddy Long Legs I hadn't known was there. (It smelled like a pickle jar in there for several hours.)

Later that night, I got up in the middle of the night for the call of nature, and saw not one, but TWO more icky black spiders. What is this? An invasion?  I ran to my office for the vinegar spray and spayed him, but he seemed to be very sleepy and didn't move.  So I nudged him with my slipper and then beat the living hell out of him. Then there was his buddy (wife, lover, friend?) on the other side of the bathroom. Same treatment, same end. Both bodies got flushed.  (And I stayed awake for two hours and had to read because no going back to sleep fast after that kind of excitement.)

I'm generally freaked out by all bugs. Hell, to me, would be to meet up with all the bugs I've killed over a lifetime and and be stuck with them crawling over me for eternity. *Extra BIG Shudder*

Mind you, if spiders stay away from me, they could live long and happy lives. Even if they were in my house, as long as I don't encounter them--Hey, Live Long and Prosper.  Come near me, and it's another story.

Anybody got a safe (non-poisonous) bug repellent recipe?