Manhandling A Stranger.
For those who know me, you know that I am completely terrified of spiders. It’s not just an average, “Yikes, a spider! Kill it!” type of fear. This fear can turn me from a stone-strong statue of a woman to a weeping, frenzied storm of terror in less than a nanosecond. Let’s put it this way, if you’re going to rob or assail me, forget the pistol or the blade. Just dangle a Daddy Long Leg within a 10 foot radius of where I am standing, and I can assure you, you’ll be leaving with my purse, my car, my shoes, and anything else you desire. That, or you’re doing to die. Either way, 8 dangling, dancing legs will produce a more profound effect on me than a man-made weapon any day.
Case in point. A few nights ago, I decided that I was going to order pizza. I usually wait right outside my door for the deliveryman, as I have two very loud, ferocious dogs that love to intimidate anyone who dares venture anywhere remotely close to my residence. I see the pizza man pull in through the complex gate, and I head outside to meet him. As I’m standing there waiting, my eyes are drawn to the door across the hall. The neighbors porch light is burned out, but I am still able to make out a menacing shadow above their door.
“Holy shit!” I scream. It’s a spider. Not a regular spider-spider, but a monstrous Haunted-House Style spider, legs outstretched from the top of the door frame and over, sprawled out and ready to pounce in full Battle-Spider mode. “Nope.” I walk back inside. Looks like I’m not having pizza tonight, unless Delivery Man finds a way to slip it under the door to me. A knock at my door, and I fly into a panic. Do I open the door, snatch the food and throw him some cash? I’d be willing to forego an extra $10 to him just to avoid Big Scary out there.
I open the door quickly, and peer past the man carrying my food. Suddenly, something tells me that I need to warn him. What if it pounces as he’s leaving? I would want someone to warn me. In a calm voice, so calm as to actually alarm the man before me, I say, “Whatever you do, do not back up and do not go near the door behind you.” His eyes widen with confusion. He turns around slowly, perhaps expecting a weapon-wielding robber, or a rabid animal. He studies the door, and then it comes – “Holy fucking shit! Look at that thing!”. He squints his eyes and starts towards it. That is when any social boundary ever instilled in me crashed and burned, right then and there. I grab him forcefully a pull him to me. “No! You can’t!” I shout. He stops, glances at my hand on his arm, and looks at me.
“Oh my God. I am so sorry!” I mumble. Yep. I’ve just manhandled the pizza man. “Here’s $25, keep the change.”
He hands me the pizza, shakes his head, and I close the door as fast as humanly possible. Ten minutes later, I peek outside to see if Big Scary is still looming above the doorframe.
He’s gone. Good? No. Now I don’t know where he is…
This week I’ve made a conscious effort to not only avoid going near the door across the hall, but I avoid that side of the hallway altogether. I also haven’t ordered pizza from Dominos since.