A spider update

A few days ago I mentioned the fact that a family of huntsman spiders had set up residence inside my Viggen. To refresh your memories, this is a huntsman spider, typically about 10-12 centimeters across.

shield_huntsman.jpg

As of a few days ago, I’d removed one, exterminated another, but a third one was still at large.

Last night I had to pick up our 19 year old from work at about 10pm. It’s become my habit to check around the cabin of the car, both sides, because even though these spiders aren’t mortally dangerous they’re a scary looking creature and it’s a surprise I’d rather avoid.

It was dark at 10pm though, so I only checked a few plainly visible areas by the light of the interior lamp. Satisfied that the spider was more worried than me after witnessing one if its kin’s insides being forced to the outside, I got in, started the car and made the brief trip to the local supermarket. All went well.

As I sat there in the carpark listening to the radio I noticed a leg poke out from behind the steering wheel and to say I nearly lost 3 brown pounds would be an understatement! Spidey came around the front of the steering wheel as I alighted from the car at considerable speed. I haven’t moved that quick for a LOT of years.

Our arachnid friend moved back around to the rear of the steering wheel as I stood outside the car wondering how to resolve the situation. I should mention that by this time, another parent had arrived and parked behind me to wait for her child to come out from the store.

To her considerable amusement, I decided that kicking the spider was a good first step, so I let go with a right foot judged to make minimal impact on the steering column, but put enough pressure on the eight-legged freak so as to extract its lunch. My judgement was off, though, and spidey took off doing laps around the rim of the steering wheel.

Clearing my mind from the panic, I retrieved a rather thick shopping bag from the back seat of the car and used it to grab the spider off the wheel in a very aggressive move that no doubt also looked rather strange to the lady parked behind. I didn’t know if I’d killed the spider in the grabbing motion so I sarted shaking the shopping bag like it was stuck to my hand and I couldn’t get it off.

Mr Huntsman went flying off about 6 feet to my right, looking shaken but far from dead. I was willing to let the whole incident go, but then he started running straight for the car once again. I know that the car floor is raised off the ground and that spidey was no longer a threat, but all rational thought had been suspended for the last few minutes and I saw no good reason to re-engage my brain at this point. Somehow the thought of him trying to head in the direction of the car just ticked me off. So he became fatally acquainted with the underside of my right Converse shoe.

I looked over my shoulder and Ms Pickup seemed quite amused by the whole show. Ben then emerged from the supermarket looking quite bemused as to why I’d be standing around in the carpark and possibly embarrassing him instead of just sitting in the car.

I hope that’s the last of them. It was shocking enough to see the big blighter emerge from behind the wheel while I was parked. If it had happened while I was driving then I’m sure I’d be writing to you know about how my Viggen’s still being separated from a power pole on the side of the road.

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For the PETA people out there, I generally do respect the right to life of all creatures, but when their natural disposition is to bite me and they invade my personal spaces, they generally get removed in a most life altering way.

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11 Comments

  1. OH – MY – GOD, Swade you are one helluva brave man!!

    If that was me Id have left the car there and called a cab. That would have been after I had dropped five brown pounds, screamed so loudly anyone in the vicinity would have thought some woman was in trouble AND probably would have suffered a major coronary.

    The bottom of your shoe must have looked disgusting. I hope you have seen the last huntsman spider for a good while!

    Makes me kind of glad my parents emigrated to Canada instead of Australia when I was a little kid.

  2. Your wife must be so proud of her manly man–protecting all the children as you were! (Oh, I wish the incident was on video.) A new nickname possibility: SW = Spider Whacker?

  3. Poor unlucky spider… Swade, couldn’t you show at least a little understanding how this simple minded creature instictly loved your Viggen, maybe he loved better than you, he even was ready to sacrifice his life for one more ride? :-DDD
    Ok, seriously, I know how did you feel, I also afraid of spiders and there could be a more dangerous risk than disgust: if he bites you during driving and you lost the control of car even for some second… However, I enjoyed your story it’s a real thriller with a bit of humour. 🙂

  4. Swade, I can relate to your feeling…. I actually have a horror date story with insects and cars. Be glad you didn’t have Mrs. Swade in the car 😛 !!

  5. Fight till you drop,never stop,you cant give up till you reach the top(fight).You’re the best in town (fight)Listen to that sound,a little bit of all you got can never bring you down.
    You’re the best around
    Nothings ever gonna bring you down
    Inspiring story and lyrics.
    I remember my first date with a hunty when i first arived in Oz.
    Needless to say coming from The South wales Valleys and being WELLARD an all that.
    I shit meself stupid
    And the Tassie ones are even bigger than the buggers on the mainland

  6. Someone said something similar to this before: be a good ambassador to arachnia and remove it peacefully with some paper towel and drop it somewhere else.

    I’m not a big fan of spiders either, although they do keep your house clean of other insects that might do more harm to you.

  7. Swade, you big blouse! You should feel ashamed killing a defenseless old Huntsman. I usually pick them up and place them outside on the wooden fence to fend off other nasties, like ants, moths, and prying neighbours. Dare I say there was a big one positioned on the carport ceiling this afternoon, just above where you were standing. Should I catch a few and bring them over?

    Drew

  8. ^^^^

    Drew, you are insane?

    Defenseless? *skin is crawling as I write this*

    Swade, Id put Charli on patrol to stop this ‘wierdo’ bringing a collection of arachnids to your house! 😉

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