An Open Letter to the Spider Living in My Car
I’m guessing you don’t remember how how we first met. Don’t worry, I’m not offended — for a human, I’m not that memorable. But on my drive home from babysitting three weeks ago, I spotted movement at the corner of my eye. I looked up and there you were, brazenly crawling on the top left portion of my dashboard. Because of your size and albino appearance (I’m a pale person, so I can sympathize to some extent, but seriously, you look creepy), I became frightened, and apparently you were rattled as well. I couldn’t tell where you scurried off to, but suddenly you were gone and I had to get back to the wheel. After all, I was about to make a left turn onto the I-10, which deserved my full attention.
A couple of days later, I got a full service car wash, not because of you, but because my vehicle is a dark color and dirties easily. I figured you’d set your sights on somewhere more interesting than an over-heated Honda, but as I unfortunately learned on my drive home from work the other night, you’ve made yourself at home in the cracks of my front window, fluttering across the glass whenever you wish to make your presence known. Is it a coincidence that you only do this when I’m driving? I’d like to give you the benefit of the doubt, as I think you just don’t get it.
In case you haven’t noticed, humans often react fearfully to your kind. We don’t mean to hurt your feelings, it’s just a common irrational feeling many of us have. It’s the way you move, and, well, the way you look. We were taught at a young age not to judge a book by the cover, but that’s a tough thing to consider all the time, especially when there are audacious, shameless spiders living rent-free in our expensive cars.
For what it’s worth, even actor Channing Tatum can’t contain himself around spiders, at least in the 2006 cinematic masterpiece She’s the Man:
I’m sorry you missed out on 90s kid classic Home Alone, but I’ll have you know that a spider is the enemy in that film, at least to robber Marv:
I understand you’re not a giant hairy tarantula, but being trapped in a contained space with you when I already have to be ultra-cautious about my every move makes you that much more dangerous and freaky to me.
You’re unfamiliar with the travails of people life, but I’ll have you know adulthood can be trying. Earlier this week, my car was towed, and seven days earlier, I received a $63 ticket for abusing a 1-hour meter in Studio City. I’d gotten away with parking wherever I wanted for a long time and paid a huge price for it on Monday. So far, 2014 hasn’t been particularly forgiving, but as I was getting on the 134 the other night, I didn’t expect you to show up again. My focus briefly shifted from the clogged freeway ahead to you, and I gasped, fearful you’d find your way over to my steering wheel and climb all over my hands. Why you’d do this, I don’t know, but you’ve been hanging out in my Honda for almost a month, so I can’t help thinking maybe you like it there, and that you like me when I’m not distressed at the sight of you.
Before it was time to merge, I gave myself a reality check and kept my eyes on the road. Though I concentrated on the journey and tried to forget about you, it was hard not to peek over through the corner of my eye, and that’s why I turned the music up. The high volume was the only thing that would keep you still.
I know, I know, I should be the bigger person here, as you’re not in fact a person and spiders shouldn’t distract me from driving around. This fear is potentially harmful to others, and sure, I could end it all by crushing you before my next errand, but you’re pretty good at hiding when the engine is off, and to be honest, I don’t take pleasure in squashing living beings. I just don’t.
You’ve managed to stay alive for an impressive amount of time and appreciate my Civic, so thanks for admiring it enough to want to stick around. That said, it would be better for the both of us if you moved on and found somewhere else to reside. Because I care about my safety and the safety of others, I’ll be mature when we’re both in the car, but let’s not test my comfort zone here. At least migrate to another part of the vehicle where we cannot see each other. I won’t blast the radio anymore to freak you out and you don’t have to play dead in hopes that I’ll quit shouting. Let’s work this out and co-exist peacefully.