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The midnight spider dance


Pam Ward

Humor Columnist

  And if you’ve ever done it, you know exactly what I mean. Here’s what happened. It was about half past midnight when Layla told me that she needed to “go potty” one last time before bedding down in the middle of my faux-down comforter. (Why must these animals not be trainable to use the toilet? One day I shall invent a way to teach them to do this and all of society will thank me and pay me loads of money. And probably bestow some type of award on me too. Like the “Pulitzer Prize for Animal Stuff”. Must get right on that. Tomorrow.) Anyway, so out we go, to potty... but wupps, the porch light is burned out. Layla, hang on so I can get the flashlight. Wupps, it’s burned out too. Ok, well it’s dark but we’ve been out there before so lets just go on and getter’done already.

  Well.  You know those big nasty spiders that only come out at night and obviously KNOW exactly where the humans will need to walk and choose that precise spot to spin their enormously hideous and grotesque webs? And then they hang their grotesque eight-legged body’s right in the middle of it, just WAITING?  Yes, those. (As a matter of fact I had googled “spiders that come out at night” just last week to see if they are poisonous and found, to my dismay, that there are some 40,000 species of spiders that come out at night. So are they poisonous? Who knows. Not Google apparently.) I say just AVOID AVOID AVOID anything that is even remotely arachnid. That’s right, I’ll take a snake any time. Give me a copper-back-rattle-moccasin any day over a spider. But I digress...

  So, Layla, being a good bit shorter than me, trots happily down the steps and easily passes UNDER the gigantic web that is at my eye level but that I am unable to see due to the burned out bulbs in both my porch and flash lights. *SIGH* (Those are the kinds of things that men are handy at. Keeping bulbs burning and checking air in tires. Stuff like that. But I’m man-less as we all know so this was bound to happen eventually. I guess the inevitable flat tire is next.)  But back to the story at hand. Layla trots off into the dark and I innocently head down the steps, immediately walking face-first into THE  web. And have mercy, I can’t see the spider but from the feel of the web on my face and in my hair I just KNOW the thing’s HUGE.   Hence the “Midnight Spider Dance”.  I start to jump and gyrate as if I’m at someone’s high school prom. I’m slapping myself in the face, head, shaking my hair all around, and screaming as only a girl would in a situation like this. All the while, Layla just stood there, watching. (Hmm. Some “watch dog” Layla.)

  Here’s where I usually say, “It could happen”. Only this week I have to say, “It DID happen”. *SIGH* Must now make a midnight run to Walmart for bulbs and batteries. Now THAT could happen.


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