No need for faux spiderwebs for Halloween at Chez LazyBuddhist. No, at this time of year, my yard becomes Spidertown.
I’ve lived in this neighborhood for about 12 years now so I’ve become used to the annual spider invasion. It usually happens in the latter part of the summer or early fall. But, it does seem that each year these damn spiders are getting bigger and bigger. You would think I lived next to a nuclear power plant rather than merely an oil refinery. One big guy has a web that is probably close to three feet in diameter. It’s right next to my walkway, which is fine with me. When he starts to encroach across my walkway? Well, bub, you’ll find out who is the bigger and more dangerous species. With the flick of this yardstick, I can bring down your days of work. So, don’t even think about expanding across my walkways, ‘k?
Sure, now I sound all bold and brave when it comes to my eight-legged friends. And normally, I have a live and let live philosophy when it comes to spiders. But, if I’m surprised by one by walking into its web, or having it lower its creepy self in front of my eyes while driving 65 mph, I become a damn shrieking fool. (And yes, I did have a stow-away in my car reveal itself to me while I was driving over a bridge at 65 mph. I completely and utterly spazzed out for the entire length of the bridge until I was safely across and found a place to park, lept out of my car and fully shook out my clothing, hair and car to make sure he wasn’t on me. I didn’t find him that morning, but I scared him enough to go take cover, only revealing himself a couple of days later when he started spinning a web in the back window of my car.)
I’m not the only one who spazzes out when encountering a spiderweb. One fall day a couple of years back, a young. outdoorsy looking man was canvassing my neighborhood for the Sierra Club. I was at the back of the house, so I called out to him to meet me at the backdoor. He walked right into a huge spiderweb and started freaking the fuck out. I tried my best not to laugh, but there was something so deliciously ironic about seeing this big rugged nature boy completely lose his shit when walking into a spider web. I know, bad Buddhist, bad bad Buddhist.
Despite my fear of spiders, I’m not a spider killer. If there is a spider in the house, we strike a deal – you stay over there, and I stay here. And since most of the time they are places I care not to be, we’re cool. I let them have the ceiling, the upper part of the walls, or the basement. Enjoy yourself Mr. Spider. Let us co-exist peacefully. And if he fails to understand our agreement about boundaries, well, that is what the boyfriend is for. He is not a spider killer either, but he is adept at capturing them and taking them outside. Good boyfriend, good good boyfriend.
This year one of the spiders have located himself right outside my kitchen widow. Every morning is like my own personal episode of Nature. One morning, there was the turf battle (see pic above) where these two pretty equally matched spiders kept attacking each other. It was fascinating, especially how this one spider would curl up in a ball and play dead. When the other spider came over to poke at him to see if he was still alive, the curled up spider would spring open and start wildly attacking the other one. Unfortunately, that spider that got attacked wasn’t the smartest spider, as he kept falling for the other one’s play dead ploy. I could have watched this for hours, but I had to go to work. When I came home, there was only one spider left – the victor. Now I watch him work on his web in the morning with all the grace of a harpist plucking at the strings.
At a safe distance I can appreciate the effort and workmanship that go into making these massive webs. And that the way I like it – at a distance.