Friday, June 10, 2005

Spider-Killing and Kicking Butt at Baby Showers

The hour of David Letterman has nearly arrived and I am still sitting at my computer, peering at the screen with contact lenses still in place. I am creating documents and maps and beautiful works of art to aid me in my presentation tomorrow. I am training volunteers to work during our week of Vacation Bible School. I need to hand them gorgeous hand-outs, complete with cute little clip-art lions and elephants and zebras, oh my.

Even though my throat hurts (only when I swallow . . . must . . . not. . . swallow . . . gulp . . .).

Only two more days of school. Who are we kidding, though? We've sputtered to a dead stop. The public school plans parties on the last days . . . and now I know why. The kids have pretty much done all they can do.

I keep forgetting to tell you about the baby shower game. I am a ruthless competitor when it comes to baby showers. You know how you have to do a handful of silly games before the mom-to-be opens her stacks of gifts ("awwwww, how cute!")? Well, I can't help myself. Suddenly, I turn into fourth-grade Mel and I must finish the test game first. This time, it was a word scramble and instead of zooming through it with embarrassing quickness, I struggled a bit. This scramble was a challenge! Everyone was finally "cheating" out loud and yet, they still didn't have all the answers. I puzzled and grimaced and rewrote the letters in the margin and finally shouted, "I'M DONE!"

I won a $10 gift certificate to Cold Stone Creamery.

Usually, I sweep the games completely, but this time the other games were random and unwinnable by simple will-power and brain-power.

As for spider-killing (and, yes, I know--spiders are good, spiders are our friends). Tonight, my mother called and asked if I could come over. I was going out anyway to buy posterboard, so I stopped by her house first. She launched into a tale of a spider, a spider so gigantic, so enormous that she could not walk through her kitchen to her bathroom for fear this arachnid would . . . well, I'm not sure what the spider would do to her since she is ten thousand times the size of a spider, but she is terrified of spiders, especially bigger than average spiders. (None of our local spiders are venomous, either.)

I am not fond of spiders myself. I don't like how they look at me. But I rarely kill them. I'm too scared to kill them. (I know, irrational. What a girl! What's wrong with me?!) I ignore them if they are not bothering me or have someone else kill them if they are lurking in the bathroom sink or something, standing between me and my toothbrush.

But my mother is beyond mere fear. She cannot sleep in an apartment if she's seen a spider crawling around. So she called me.

As we chatted a while later, sitting on her bed, clipping her new kitten's claws, the spider lurched toward us. She began to babble and scream incoherently, leaving me to be the brave rescuer. I had to spring into action. I grabbed a crockpot box sitting on her bedroom floor (why? because she's a packrat) and slammed it down onto the spider.

Then we both clutched our hands to our chests and felt our hearts pounding.

Eventually, I gathered enough courage to lift the box, poke at the smooshed spider with a fly swatter and flush it down the toilet.

I hate it when I'm forced into being the Brave One. Aren't mothers supposed to do this? I mean, shouldn't my mother be the one protecting me? When did this shift happen?


Blogger Jan said...

Ah, yes. The shift. It happened to me, too.

And I, like your mother, can go into convulsions over spiders, crickets and roaches. Give me a mouse or a snake and I'm wonder woman, but those little critters send me shaking, crying and clutching at my chest. What IS up with that?

10:11 AM  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

Master kills the ITSY BITSY SPIDER! Murderer! Murderer! Master is tricksy with the box. Master might kills us!! (But Master would never kills us, Master likes us) But Master is tricksy. Tricksy Master.

Spiders are good, mmmmkay? They eat other bad things, mmmmkay? It's all about the great circle of life, mmmmkay? Pick the spider up and put it outside, mmmmkay? First, chase your mother around the house with the spider in the box, mmmmmkay? Just kidding, mmmkay? That would be kinda mean, mmmkay?

11:50 AM  
Blogger Mrs. Happy Housewife said...

I'm like your mother about spiders. Killing spiders is what my son does best. He's 7. So, yes, there is a shift when mom is the fearful one but that's ok because he usually gets a tasty treat afterwards.

11:58 AM  
Blogger Judy said...

Bats. That's what I don't like.

A huge one flew at my head one night. Huge, I say. It was H-U-G-E. My dad, whom I shall refer to henceforth as Batman Forever, came and confirmed it's hugeness, and also it's undying will to live.

That's just the first story. It has several sequels. Bat #1's family has a hit list, and I am on it.

1:25 PM  
Blogger barbara curtis said...

Spiders are good for killing other bugs, so it's a tricky question. . .

my worst is mice, which make me jump and scream hysterically -- just like the cartoons.

Great stories, Mel. I always feel right there with ya!

3:01 PM  
Blogger Julana said...

I once stayed with my gray-haired grandmother after she had foot surgery and was confined to bed. She slept in the dining room, to be near the bathroom. Somehow a big wasp got in and struggled against the window, trying to leave. I am terrified of wasps. My grandmother took a large pair of scissors, and hobbled over to the window on bandaged feet, and cut the wasp in half. This happened over 25 years ago, but has left a permanent imprint in memory. All I am say is, Mel, you're a better man than I am. :-)

3:15 PM  
Blogger Bossy♥'s YOU said...

My mother is the same way when it comes to time she called and said she had a spider in her house..bigger than she had ever seen...and me well...i hate them too..i am scared to step on them for fear they might climb over my shoe...but i went to see the big spider...and it was no bigger than a daddy long legs..which are not really spiders..and i did not know that...but i sqaushed it dead and made her clean up the carcass

7:16 PM  
Blogger Tracy said...

I'm ridiculously afraid of spiders too. So is Cory. This makes for a chaotic household when we find one! I won't even go into my kitchen right now. It's been raining, and I KNOW I will find one in there. I'm too scared of them to get close enough to kill them!

9:40 PM  
Blogger Sue said...

Great job killing the spider! You did your boys proud, I'm sure. What was the word you had to scramble at the shower? I can't imagine a word that would stump you.

4:09 AM  
Blogger Tina said...

It's always easier for me to kill a spider that has been disabled with hairspray. Just a thought for you...a very important thought...

8:35 AM  

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