Friday, May 4, 2007

I Don't Like Spiders and Snakes

When I was 8 or so, we moved to Hawaii. There are many aspects of Hawaii that I could talk about. The one today? Ants. Specifically, ants in the bathtub.

My mother was a marvelous housekeeper, so I'm not airing any nasty secrets by telling the world -- "world" being you five or six readers -- that we had ants. You couldn't keep them away. Actually, you probably could, but we had a bunch of kids and a puppy, so you couldn't poison the ants.

I was at the age where I still took baths rather than showers. The ants would be in the tub, doing their ant-like things, when the GREAT WATER would spill FROM ABOVE. The ants would forget all their training and instruction in the finer art of teamwork in their efforts to escape the GREAT WATER FROM ABOVE.

I would save those ants. I would. Every last one of them. Maybe there would be 10 or so caught up in my bath each time. I'd retrieve them from the water, set them on the edge of the tub, and watch them shake it off. I'd imagine them heading back to their home and the stories they'd tell of their escape from the GREAT WATER FROM ABOVE. And I'd imagine the world 25 years later, when the ants had become larger than any man through some freak accident. And the ants would be crushing all the humans. Except me. The child of lore who had saved their fellow beings from the GREAT WATER FROM ABOVE.

It's been more than 25 years. I no longer have the fantasy of my life being spared because of my heroic saving of ants. I no longer save creatures. In fact, I've gone from savior of ants to killer of all insects and arachnids and the like. Spiders freak me out. And the spiders are everywhere. So here is my thought this morning.

The itsy-bitsy spider went down the kitchen spout.

Down came the water and washed the spider out.

On came the disposal and chopped it all to bits.

And the itsy-bitsy spider had to call it quits.

Growing up. It's not for the weak of heart.


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