Skip to main content
PBS logo

The Eclectic Pen - There's A Spider in the Bed!

By: T. -   + 2 more  
Date Submitted: 11/26/2008
Genre: Biographies & Memoirs » Memoirs
Words: 811

  It about scared the sh!t out of me. 12:30am-ish. I'm laying in bed,
Butch sleeping hard next to me, snoring so loud I wonder if I'm going
to have to nudge him to change positions. I'm reading. I read every
night. Sometimes I read the whole night through, then sleep until
late in the afternoon. A person can do that when nothing is expected
of them anymore. When they've become somewhat of a permanent fixture
either in the bed or on their recliner or sitting on the front porch,
watching life pass them by. Anyway, back to the story. I was laying
in bed, 3 pillows propping me up high, straining to read a novel,
Black and Blue, by Anna Quindlen, an Oprah's pick. I like to read
Oprah's picks--not because Oprah chose the book, but because the books
she chooses tend to be dark, raw, literature mirroring the parts of
life that we don't want to show to the outside world. That's how
Black and Blue was...about a woman who fled her abusive husband and
was spending every waking moment terrified that he would find her and
kill her. She knew if he found her he would. He'd kill her. Anyway,
I'm all involved in this book, about 1/3 of the way through it, and
suddenly a big ass damn spider runs across my pinkie finger of my left
hand and into the middle of the book that I'm holding over my face. I
move quick, throwing the book to the foot of the bed, yanking the
covers off of me, screaming "Butch," and jumping up, freaking out.
Let me tell you, Butch was none to happy with me waking him up. He
went to bed late and had to get up at 5am for a long 12 hours of work.
"What is it??" He yelled back at me. "A spider! A spider is in the
bed! It's a big black one--maybe a black widow or a brown recluse!"

"Oh, Tammy! It's just a damn spider." I proceed to tell him that I'm
not getting back into bed until we find the spider--or at least find
out if it is still in the bed covers. We strip the bed and don't find
it. I pick up the paperback novel I was reading to set it back on the
nightstand and that's when I see a tiny black insect leg sticking out
from between 2 pages. The spider was squished in my book! Ugh!
"Butch, here's the spider. It's in my book!" He takes the book from
me and dumps the spider in the toilet. There is a teeny tiny moist
spot where the spider had been. I can't bear to look at it. I can't
read this book anymore. Gross. I have to toss the book. Just
thinking about it now gives me the heebie-jeebies. I KNOW the spider
is dead and gone and won't run up my arm again, but the part of my
brain that doesn't run on logic screams "NO!" when I think about
resuming reading the book.

So now the spider's gone, Butch is sawing logs again, and I'm sitting
on the side of the bed, anxious as all get-out. I pop 2 Xanax in my
mouth and wash it down with water from the glass on my nightstand. I
then lie down, turn off the light, and lay there. Is that something
crawling on my leg? What if there is a nest of spiders under my bed,
or maybe in the cloth curtains I have covering the wall at the head of
my bed. Those will have to come down. I'll find a nice framed
picture to put there. My mind is racing. I think back to a time when
my brother Harold and I were young'uns.

We had a roll-down bamboo window covering in the dining area. We had
rolled it down and hiding inside was a big black scorpion. Living in
the desert, seeing scorpions isn't a big deal, but this was by far the
largest scorpion I've ever seen--both then and since. One of us runs
to the bathroom and gets my mama's big can of super strength Aqua Net
hair spray. Harold is braver than I am, so he is the one who sprays
hairspray on the scorpion. The scorpion becomes alarmed and starts
stinging itself with it's huge barbed tail. Every time it touches
that stinger to it's back, a little spark of electricity flares and
makes a haunting sound. The scorpion stings itself to death.

Now, it is 2:18 am and I'm back in bed. I'm calm. I should
be in bed, but the thought of that spider won't let me sleep. I still
feel it run across my pinkie, as if its appendages burned tracks in my
flesh. Laying in bed, all my nerves are on high alert--was that
something on my leg?

The Eclectic Pen » All Stories by T. -

Member Comments

Leave a comment about this story...

Comments 1 to 3 of 3
Veronica S. (snowkitty) - , - 11/29/2008 1:11 PM ET
That is creepy. Sounds like something I did one night with a hornet.
Marta J. (booksnob) - 11/30/2008 1:54 PM ET
I've lived in rodent-infested buildings in both Boston and New Orleans and believe me, I know the feelings you describe...
Sophira B. (sophiraness) - 12/1/2008 2:57 PM ET
theres nothing like a creepy crawly to give you the jeebies. still, id rather a spider than a waterbug!
Comments 1 to 3 of 3