Singer-songwriter Jim Stafford got it right when he sang “I don’t like spiders and snakes.”
OK, I know the line belonged to the female in the song but spiders and snakes usually pretty quickly put me in touch with my feminine side.
I’ve tramped the prairies since I was a wee lad and I grew up with a healthy respect for snakes of all sorts but especially rattlesnakes. It’s never stopped me from roaming through the mesquites and yuccas but on a recent outing I found myself a little more on alert than normal.
That day just the sight of a snake hole caused me to break into a bit of a cold sweat. If one had rattled I’d have died clutching my heart with nary a bite from a viper.
Strangely enough morbid curiosity still got the better of me driving down the road the other day when I spotted a snake as big around as my arm on the highway. I had to turn around and get a look but it turned out to be just a big bull snake. When he moved I had a thought about him crawling under and onto my car so I quickly moved along.
The thought of a creature under a vehicle, piece of furniture or bed never set well with me.
As I child I was known to take a running dive into bed so that whatever was under the bed waiting to bite me from under the bed wouldn’t get too good a shot at me.
I think I may have lost my man card the other night over a spider. This was no ordinary spider though, I believe it is what they call a wolf spider.
I was sitting on the bed and ready to get up to turn off the light when this hulking spider appeared in the doorway poised to run under my bed. I Googled wolf spider on the iPad and found it under “10 Deadliest Spiders” — yikes!
Our little dog Maggie was next to me, and my first thought was to throw the terrier off the bed onto the spider. The spider was nearly as big as the dog and my wife vetoed this idea and suggested I hitch my panties up tight and kill it myself.
My manhood challenged like that I had to act and I began to look for something with which to squish a spider. A wet wipe bucket was what I finally came up with and I made my frontal attack slowly and catlike while the arachnid rested. I ended by swiftly slamming the plastic bucket down on the unsuspecting beast.
When I lifted the bucket he scurried unfazed out from under it, right toward my bare feet. I shrieked like a little girl and did a quick dance that caused the spider fangs to narrowly miss my big toe.
I brought the bucket down on the killer again and again like the piston on a John Deere tractor.
“He’ll never have the guts to do that again” I declared as I donned my frilliest nightgown and crawled into bed.
Karl Terry writes for Clovis Media Inc. Contact him at: