In cynical celebration of our favorite death celebrating season, we’re going all out on fear based topics this month. Every day, Ben will present one thing that scares him, ranging from the anxious and annoying to the deadly and doomed. This is… Things That Scare Me.
The wife (long story!) and I were on a road trip a few weeks back, trudging alongside the listless fields of Iowan grain, when during one point of our monotonous journey I felt a brief flutter against my exposed leg. I thought little of it at first, my mind hardly lucid as it was, drifting in and out of consciousness in the passenger window sun. But then I felt it again. And again. And again. And again. Eight little flutters on my leg in all. Most curious. So I forced open my eyes, pulled myself from the blissful hugs of Nap Town, and looked down. And that’s when I screamed and we nearly died.
Yes, screamed. Because when I looked down, a goddamned eight legged, fist-sized, MONSTROSITY was clinging to my calf, a fucking hell-spawn with a fur covered abdomen, fang tipped chelicerae twitching back and forth, and row of marbled black eyes constructed from loose remnants of damned human souls.
So yeah, I screamed. I screamed loud, and I screamed high, my shriek splintering the windshield into fractured cul-de-sacs of visibility. My wife tried her best to maintain control, but my piercing wail was too much, and we swerved into a ditch. I jumped from the car in hysteria, she came scrambling after, wondering, begging me to tell her what happened. “A spider,” I said, “A fucking spider.” That’s when we burned the car. We’ve been carpooling ever since.
Well or maybe we just pulled over and got out of the car covered in goose bumps, shivering from the heebie jeebies. I can’t really remember because spider incidents are grotesquely traumatic and I’ve blocked out that part of my memory. I do know that we eventually found the little poisonous hairball, having leapt from my leg in the pandemonium, curled up on a wire under the glove box, where it was eventually extracted with a four hundred or so foot stick.
And that’s the thing about spiders: they can be anywhere at any time, lurking, waiting in the shadows. They’re all around us, those deviant hairy arachnids, spinning silver webs to encase their prey. They exist to feed, to drain the lifeblood from other living things. And as a living thing, the only thing stopping them from wrapping you up in sticky thread and sucking you dry? Size. That’s all we have on them. For now. Eventually they’re going to grow and we’re all going die.