Eight legs are six too many

Daddy Long Legs

This is the time of year when Daddy Long Legs find their way into the house through invisible nooks and crannies.

I have a very early memory of a DLL landing in my bath tub. I had a bath full of white mountains formed by Matey bubble bath, and was making up stories about the people who lived in the hills and valleys, definitely including heroic dogs with barrels of life-saving drink round their necks. The next thing I knew, a monstrous creature was striding over the peaks more or less at eyeball level, clearly intent on devouring me. Deserting my imaginary mountain dwellers to their fate I took the only course of action open to me and screamed my lungs out. The sonic attack deterred the mighty beast not a whit, but it did attract my mother's attention and she raced in to save her precious offspring from the ravening jaws of the dread arachnid.

As I matured in years this particular response to large spiders seemed less dignified – and indeed now that my mother is 83 and smaller than me, I doubt it would be as effective.

I have therefore moved to option 2: the card and glass solution. You see, despite everything I wish the beasties no ill. I just prefer not to share my living space with them. It's something about the way they move. I'm afraid not of them, but of hurting them when I pick them up. The classic dilemma is this: if I hold them too tight, I get squished spider all over my hands; if I am too gentle I get panicked spider running up my sleeve and down my neck. Neither is a good outcome. Enter the card and glass.

I place the glass over the spider in an inverted position. Slide the card or paper underneath the glass, trapping the creature inside. Then transport the ensemble to the nearest door or window, lean out and remove the card. If the spider remains in the glass, leave the glass outside until the spider has gone. Simples!

Of course, I may have saved it from squishing merely to feed it to a bird, but Nature can be cruel like that. Circle of Life and so on. Even birds have to eat.

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