At times, one may find him or herself faced with the most harrowing of circumstances, where action can only be necessitated through the most desperate need. A moment where one's heart must rise above crippling fear, although the terror be a raging torrent of inadequacy, self doubt, and utter dread.

I speak of having to face spiders, of course.

Every time I think that I have taken a huge step in the direction of a recovering SISSY, I am reminded that I am a spectacular coward.

I entered my kitchen last night in search of some form of sustenance. As I passed the fridge, I noticed a little green dangling spider, suspended from the bottom of my cabinets, hanging almost equidistant between the 2 sinks. My immediate reaction was a resounding gasp, followed by (or in conjunction with) an approximate backward leap of 1 foot, and a consequential "shit." At that point, I began to immediately scan the room, and also my brain for the best and safest manner in which to dispose of the ungodly creature. Time was of the essence, because the spider was slowly inching its way up the silk line, into my cupboard. Or wherever his spidery heart desired, upon reaching the apex.

The only thing I could think of, was grabbing a paper towel, draping it across my open palms, and then quickly clapping the spider into oblivion. Which was a real big problem for me, because that would mean that there would only be a very thin layer of cheap papery substance between the spider and my skin. SCARY. I sat there a moment, contemplating which thought I loathed more; the spider possibly escaping into my home, or smashed between my hands so feebly protected. "Quit being a bitch," I berated myself, and clapped away.

At that moment, upon feeling the spider's tiny body crushed between my hands, I felt like I had climbed a small, difficult mountain. I had never slain a spider in this manner. In fact, even the destruction of a centipede, earwig, or other similar creature will typically involve no fewer than 5 wadded inches of toilet paper or paper towel separating my hand from the deed. And then I have to smash unnecessarily hard, to ensure absolute death, and then quickly toss the carcass into the nearest toilet bowl for a burial at sea. In clapping the arachnid, I had overcome a fraction of my dreadful fear. I let the paper towel gently fall from my hands, and drift to the counter top. Upon landing, it unfolded. Enter vision--smashed spider. Cue repeat--resounding gasp, backward hopping "shit." Also--add some minor wrist flailing.

All dignity lost. Again. Every time.

I think the root of my spider (and general bug) fear can be traced back to an uncle I once had. I say once had, because he decided that family was less important than other clandestine, devious pursuits. But I always thought he was wayyyy cool. I mean, the dude said "damn," and "hell," with wild abandon. Was a democrat. And had an earring (left ear.) And had a tee pee in his back yard (north side.) And had tomahawks. Which could be thrown from or near the tee pee (from south to north, never east to west.) The guy was a rad uncle. Also, he was terrified of spiders.

I recall being in a movie. Galaxy Quest, featuring Tim Allen and Alan Rickman. There was a part where a bunch of flying space spiders began to approach the ship. My uncle said, "Ohhh damn, (probably) I'm not going to like this part." Now me, thinking he was cool, also thought it might be cool to be even MORE afraid of spiders than what was natural. So I think my impressionable mine programmed that most irrational fear to further dictate the remainder of my body-to-spider physical reactions, for the duration of my life. The crippling fear. The swearing. The wrist flailing.

Thanks for the arachnophobic stain, uncle. At least the earring never took.

1 comment:

Debbie said...

Yay Uncle B for leaving a legacy of swearing coolness and so much more. Perhaps discovering the source is half the battle of overcoming the problem. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for you.