When It Comes To These Guys, I’m All NIMBY:

The funeral of Queen Elizabeth II in September was a stately, solemn occasion, a dignified celebration of the life of England’s longest-reigning monarch:

I’m repeating the above image below so you can take note of the bouquet, and the white card on top of it:

Invitations to the ceremony for Queen Elizabeth were desired by many but given to only a few.

And it seems that some of those in attendance weren’t paying much attention to the funeral, but rather to this – uninvited – guest on the white card on top of the bouquet:

According to this:

And many other articles:

“Eagle-eyed royal watchers couldn’t help but notice a crawling creature on top of a letter that was placed onto the coffin.”

And apparently these royal watchers also “couldn’t help but” sharing their thoughts after spotting the creature.

And isn’t that just the way of our world?

Instead of respectfully bowing their heads and reflecting on the life and death of the queen – and perhaps their own lives and mortality – some at the queen’s funeral were gawking, taking pictures and videos, and quickly posting on every possible social media platform.

And the posts – these people were practically obsessed by this spider:

“Throughout the full of the Queen’s funeral I keep thinking about the spider I saw on her flowers and where the f – – k it is now????  Wouldn’t catch me picking her back up I’d be out of there.”

Nice.

“Bro there’s a spider running across the card on the queen’s coffin.”

“Bro”?  Glad you let Bro know.

“The most famous spider in the world right now.  God save the Royal Spider.”

God save us from all this arachnid attention overload.

There were many more examples but I thought I’d spare you – and myself.

Honestly, the only redeeming thing to come out of all this attention on the spider was this rather punny headline in the Washington Post:

Otherwise…come on, folks!

We’re talking about an uninvited, unwelcome pest that, had I spotted it in my house, I would not have immortalized it forever on social media but would instead have done this:

I hate spiders.  Arachnids.  Whatever you care to call them.

And my theory is that one – probably more – spider may have seen all the social media fuss and attention their funeral-crashing colleague got, and decided to make their presence known on my side on the world.

Not long after the Queen’s funeral, a spider took up residence in my back yard.

The spider was huge.

Bigger than my head – see?

Terrorizing me.

I was living in constant fear that this spider was going to make itself comfortable in the back yard, and then invite itself into our house, like that “Royal Spider” invited itself into the Queen’s funeral.

Oh, this all started out looking innocent enough:

You see that single, silver spider web strand glinting in the sun? 

Just a single strand, no big deal.

Except for one thing:

That single strand stretched from a structure in our back yard to an awning on the back of our house:

A distance of 15 feet.

If a spider needs a web that starts out at 15 feet across, how the hell big is that spider?

In an effort to discourage the spider from further web-building (and while I hid behind the sofa), my knight-in-shining-armor husband went outside, rolled out the awning and rolled it back in again.

That single silver strand rippled and bounced and waved, and then stretched right back to its full 15 feet – undamaged.

Spider:  1.

Humans:  0.

Nighttime fell, and we gave up our efforts.

We slept, but the spider didn’t.

And the next morning…

That non-paying guest had made a web in the back yard:

Spider:

Humans:

And lest you think I’m exaggerating, let’s have a look at the world’s biggest (though I now know better) spider:

Meet the goliath birdeater.  Yes, it’s venomous, and it has inch-long fangs.

Its bigger cousin was living in our back yard.

No wonder I hate spiders.

But…I also know it’s true that spiders are an important part of our ecosystem.  This article, for example:

Says that spiders provide incredible services to our ecosystem and to humans, including:

  • Spiders survive on insects like fleas, flies, and mosquitoes – many of which have the capability of destroying produce crops and carrying potentially dangerous diseases.
  • Spider silk is so strong, scientists and developers have even experimented with integrating spider silk in bulletproof vests.
  • Spider venom has been used in medical research, and has helped in creating painkillers, cancer treatments, and even male contraceptives.

While this site:

Notes that:

“Spiders are a food source for other animals:  Its top predators include lizards, birds, and fish.  In desert climates, spiders are valuable food for mammals.”

And:

“Spiders are crucial in controlling insect populations in every ecosystem they’re a part of.  If spiders vanished, it would set off a domino effect of problems that would harm and eventually destroy the world as we know it.”

Yikes!

“Eventually destroy the world as we know it”?

Hmmm.

Maybe I should rethink my strategy of…

Maybe I should leave that monster spider in my back yard alone.

OK, Resolved: 

An armistice is declared.

With this caveat:

Spiders can live up to two years.

I’m thinking of all the nasty mosquitos it can eat – good news.

And maybe it will become a lizard’s lunch – also good news…

But…but…

If there’s bad news – if that spider comes into my house…

I’m am SO outta here…

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