Friday, August 27, 2010

The Spider and the Moth

Have you ever been reading on the couch late at night perhaps even just starting to nod off when in the dim periphery of your vision you glimpse movement something creeping across the armrest toward you something that as you snap to startled alertness resolves into the shape of a large-ish spider with striped legs and an athletic build BUT even as freaked-out as you are you don’t actually want to kill this spider because you know that they eat all of the other bugs you like even less so you grab a glass and you attempt to catch the spider in the glass but this spider moves so fast that it actually seems able to teleport itself six inches in any direction so every time you think you’re bringing the glass down over the spider it’s already somewhere else and you’re becoming just a little concerned that maybe the next time you bring the glass down the spider will be on your face but finally you trap it YESSS! and you cover the open end of the glass with a catalog and carry the whole silly contraption out the door across the front porch and down the walk chuckling uneasily as the spider hurls itself against the glass until you reach the sidewalk where you release it which is to say that you use the glass to fling the now furious spider as far from you as possible WHEW! and then heading back into the house just as you’re re-crossing the porch a teensy-weensy little moth that had been idly circling the porch light now flies right into your ear and disappears like RIGHT DIRECTLY INTO YOUR EAR CANAL and for a second or two you don’t hear anything at all and you’re wondering

Wait…did that really happen?

and then as if reading your mind which it might actually be able to do from its current vantage the moth starts flapping madly inside your ear or trying to flap anyway but there isn’t nearly enough room in there so it’s just like fltfltfltfltfltflt in your ear and you’re thinking oh crap oh crap oh crap it’s facing the wrong way it’s just going to push itself deeper and then

Oh wait…is it gone?

but then fltfltfltfltfltflt and now you’re digging at your ear and stumbling into the house oh crap oh crap oh crap and it’s flapping madly and then it stops and it’s flapping and then it stops and you’re trying to jam your finger in there but you don’t feel anything and you’re wondering How far can it go? How far is my ear drum? Will it stop at my ear drum or can it keep going and get totally stuck somewhere up against my brain? Can I somehow get tweezers in there and pull it out? and it just keeps flapping and flapping and CRAP! I’m going to end up at the hospital to get this fricking thing removed and in front of the bathroom mirror now you get a flashlight and point it into your ear not because you hope to see anything but because you remember some Saturday-morning cartoon PSA about how holding a light up to your ear will lure a bug out and fltfltfltfltfltflt and how could this possibly happen often enough to warrant a PSA? and anyway it’s not even working because the idiot moth is stuck facing the wrong fricking direction fltfltfltfltfltflt and you don’t want to jam anything in there because then you might have a dead squished moth stuck in your ear and THEN how would you get it out? and fltfltfltfltfltflt you’re digging and starting to imagine fltfltfltfltfltflt how you’ll describe this to the nurse and wondering whether fltfltfltfltfltflt you could actually even wait in the emergency room with this thing flapping without tearing your ear off or at least without losing your mind which you may’ve already done anyway fltfltfltfltfltflt and you’re jamming your finger in there and fltfltfltfltfltflt becoming more and more hopeless fltfltfltfltfltflt when


There it goes…

      the moth arcing away toward the ceiling
      as if nothing happened

I should probably kill it now, but…

you can't concern yourself with that now because you’re already rummaging for the Q-tips so you can clean that ear LIKE IT HAS NEVER BEEN CLEANED BEFORE and what’s more you are NEVER AGAIN going outside at night without ear protection or maybe you’ll just wear your iPod ear buds 24/7 NO POD JUST BUDS WHATEVER IT TAKES SO THAT THIS NEVER, EVER HAPPENS AGAIN!

Has that ever happened to you?

Yeah, me neither.


  1. This really freaked me out (and made me laugh – sorry).

    I mean, in that moment, what do you do? I saw no such PSA’s for the Bug-In-Ear Survival Technique. All I had was Chekhov in “The Wrath of Khan,” which was not reassuring.

    So I’m glad for the happy ending. Just don’t expect me to go to bed tonight without ear plugs.

  2. It freaked me out pretty good too, Steve, but I've recovered and the moth & I have actually become pretty chummy. All's well that ends well, right?

  3. We just got back from Lilah's piano lesson. Her new song for the week: The Itsy-Bitsy Spider.