Scratchy Glitter

Observations for the easily irritated.

Tag: spiders

The Sin of Sloth in Action

…it sounds like a contradiction in terms, but I have made it come to pass.

The other day a man gave me his seat on the bus. I congratulated myself on my devastating femininity. Then I realized I was sitting under a sign saying ‘PLEASE OFFER THESE SEATS TO THE ELDERLY OR PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES.”


One of my Numerous and Aggressive In-Laws, Sister Catherine, posted a video made by a teenage boy, demonstrating how his mother freaks out while getting the house ready for guests. (No, I can’t link to it; you should realize that by now.) The resemblance to my in-laws was, in fact, eerie, complete with dialogue like, “If you kids haven’t made your beds by now, throw them out! It’s too late!…No one should think we sit!!…I need a bird feeder at every window!…Somebody stick seashells on all the doorknobs!”

It’s not exactly like that at our house, even though I’m married to Sister Catherine’s brother. The only holiday we are responsible for is July 4th, because our house is so small that we can’t entertain when it’s cold and people can’t overflow into the yard. (Digression: commercial for WFIE weather: “Sometimes cold weather isn’t pleasant.” Sometimes?) Here, at any rate, is how clean up for guests. I’m counting on everyone forgetting I said all this by July 4th.

BATHROOM: Remember that Rom said he’d take care of it. Breathe sigh of relief.

HALL: Surely a hall doesn’t need cleaning? Note dust on baseboards. Resent its presence. Reflect on the need to do something about the hall closet so I can actually locate something when I need it. Then realize I don’t even remember exactly what’s in there anymore.

BEDROOM: Remove obvious dead leaves from large houseplant. Cat Esmerelda strolls in, hoping I’m doing something interesting, realizes yet again that it’s something boring, leaves. Cat Glamour resents that I’m removing the things she most likes to noisily eat on Sunday mornings when I’m trying to sleep because I have to get up early for church. Dust all the stuff on my chest of drawers. Wish I had less stuff. Note that Ez’s toy mouse is on the floor again, toss it up on top of my clothes chest (yes, I have two chests full of clothes, plus one closet) where it belongs. Realize there are spiders under the table with the houseplant on it, resolve to finish the rest of the job at some hour when spiders are less likely to be active.

MY ROOM (office? study? den? lair? guest bedroom, although it has no bed and rarely contains guests?): Become dismayed by all the books I own that I haven’t read in years or at all. Discover that there are silverfish behind some of them. Decide that taking them all out and dusting behind them would take too long, and no one’s likely to look closely at them anyway. Dust bric-a-brac, wonder about the derivation of the term bric-a-brac. Light scented candle, get paranoid about leaving it unattended, as all candle labels warn you not to do. Note profusion of perfume samples, resolve to find my signature scent, as I have been trying to do since 1969.

LIVING ROOM: Another large houseplant with dead leaves. This one exudes droplets of sticky fluid that won’t wash off. Weigh merits of taking everything off the coffee table first or just dusting around it all. Decide there’s no time for the former option because I put all this off until July 3rd anyway. Dust every small decorative item on the shelves, curse each one individually. Remember that I actually alphabetized my CD’s this year, proving that I can finish something that I start. Worry about the younger generation thinking, “You still have CD’s?”

KITCHEN: Attack kitchen table, to make room for large quantities of food. Discover that the stack of magazines next to my place at the table contains the Walgreen’s ad from six weeks ago. Peruse it and attempt to determine the frequency with which items I need go on sale, taking a long-term view. Note that Secret Romantic Rose deodorant is featured in the illustration, feel reassured that it hasn’t been discontinued. Discover there is cat hair on the table legs, become irate because vertical surfaces shouldn’t need dusting, because of gravity.

I can’t remember who it was who said our housekeeping resembles the Addams Family’s, but there you have it. The weird thing is that I am actually capable of laser-like focus (capable of it? more like, incapable of anything else), under the right circumstances. “Right circumstances” = “something I want to do.”


After vowing that he would never do it, “for the sake of my sanity,” Nick looked in my window–“to my everlasting horror,” he said. What horrifying thing was I doing? Reading the Bible. I knew he was coming by, to pick up some table scraps we’d decided to toss him, but since he hadn’t texted me yet, I wasn’t expecting him right then. So there came a furtive tapping, as of someone gently rapping, rapping on my chamber door, and I am pleased to report I didn’t jump. Because I’m not the nervous, twitchy type.


This blog still gets intermittently investigated by people who Google Halle Berry, just because I did one post long ago that mentioned her. So…HALLE BERRY HALLE BERRY HALLE BERRY. That’ll triple my readership!

A Clean Bill of Health

Forgot to mention–during my ordeal, Ez stuck her head in the bathroom door to check on me–then immediately withdrew. Which goes to show that an animal’s love is not, in fact, unconditional.

I am in a good mood, because I will not have to drink that stuff for another 10 years, and I might be dead by then. Not only did it taste like the devil’s attempt at 7-Up, it had the consistency of spit.

As a souvenir, I have a big grape-colored bruise on my arm, due to difficulties getting the IV started. I should have known when the woman doing it said, “You know, I really appreciate it when it acts like it’s supposed to.” Which means that it either acted like it was supposed to, or it didn’t. At any rate, it will be 3/4 sleeves for me for the foreseeable future, because it looks like I tried to inject drugs, but was incompetent. Which I probably would be if I did. Today I wanted to wear one of my rose-print sweaters, and had 3 color choices with the desired sleeve length. “Multi Floral”–nope, too multi-colored, might match a bruise on the arm too well.  Black and blue print–not even to be considered. I settled on “Coral Bliss with Bavarian Cream,” which is probably the most overwrought color name Lands End has yet come up with.


Halloween decorations are not allowed to go up until October.

Speaking of the season it ’tis (I say redundantly), at Walgreens they have a life-sized witch statue, which startles me every time I go in. For one thing, she’s almost exactly my height. (Nick, do not breathe one word. Not a single word, understand?) As happens every year, I had to restrain myself from spending 99 cents (because they think we won’t notice that that’s basically $1) on a black silk rose with my choice of red, purple, or silver glitter, because what would I do with that? Stick it in my mailbox at work? Speaking of self-restraint, I was enticed by a display of Disney Villains makeup. Now I don’t need more makeup, but who could resist eyeshadows with color names like Dungeon and Scream of Fright? (“Not you, certainly,” says Nick, laying his hand on his taser, as he so often does when he’s in uniform in my presence. He must be easily frightened.) I will probably be kept from purchasing these by a dilemma–I have a sentimental attachment to Maleficent, because I had a Sleeping Beauty book as a kid, when the Disney movie first came out…but the colors in the Evil-Queen-from-Snow-White palette would actually look better with my coloring. Yes, the villainess from Snow White doesn’t have a name–they just call her Evil Queen. If I were an evil queen, I’d do something about that.

Speaking of evil, I was pleased to note that, for the first time, the concept of the Evil Clown is really taking off this year.

(Disclaimer: Unlike all other bloggers on the face of the earth, I have not been able to figure out how to negotiate a lucrative tie-in, so Walgreen’s is not, in fact, giving me a lifetime supply of Halloween decorations in exchange for this post. Even though there is a creepy spider living in my bathroom. And even though when Rom took his pack down from the hook,  70+ stink bugs came trooping out like the passengers in a clown car. An evil clown car.) 

I Forgot More Than You’ll Ever Know

…at any rate, I forgot to include the following in the last post.


The paper had an article about a guy getting his tarantulas stolen. He kept them in jars under his house to hibernate in winter. So someone knew this and went under there to get them. HE HAD SPIDERS UNDER HIS HOUSE. Come to think of it, I have spiders under my house, too, or so Rom informs me.


In view of Nick’s continued insolence, I am preparing the yard barn on my property to serve as a detention facility. There are no windows, but a lantern could be provided, contingent on good behavior. There are also mice, to provide companionship and serve as snacks.


Do not call 911 because you got a bad haircut at the beauty academy. This should go without saying, but nothing that should ever does.


Mango hard ale. I am doomed.


My job just required me to touch somebody’s slimy apple core.

Whatever Is Not Forbidden Is Compulsory

In case you’re wondering, a pedestrian wanting to cross the street still has the right of way over a motorist wanting to turn right on red, kthnxbye! Someday I will kick someone’s car. Then they’ll call the cops, then Nick will give me a ride home (whether I’m ready to go home or not) to defuse the situation. Or maybe I’ll kick him, if sufficiently provoked. I almost did kick him at Thornton’s once, because another officer told me to. I wonder how that would play out in court.

I just reached into my backpack to get Zyrtec (actually, in the interests of accuracy, the CVS generic equivalent), and discovered the lid had come off the bottle. So now there are 38 of those suckers rattling around in the bottom of my backpack, and I’ll have to find and count them all. %&$! AND in the course of doing that, I just discovered a coupon for the razors I bought today at full price,  &*$#@!^%!!! I hate everyone, myself most of all.

Back again, and I ONLY FOUND 37. I just have to tell myself that I must have taken one more than I remembered. (NO, I don’t keep count of how many I take; I just happened to remember because I’d recently started the bottle.) The matter of the forgotten coupon, however, will trouble me every time I use those razors until I have finished the package, and then the memory will slowly fade.


–I’m sure it’s a matter of interest to all, and if not, don’t tell me, or you’ll hurt my feelings.

–A CD (YES, I still listen to CDs, SHUT UP!) must be listened to in its entirety, because doing it any other way would be immoral.

–How to choose a seat at a restaurant, waiting room, or public conveyance: As far away from other people as possible. Bonus points if it’s tucked into a corner, out of the line of sight of the employees. Which is kind of odd, because it’s not like I’m planning to do anything they’d disapprove of.

–Everything I’m wearing must match to the best of my ability, so I don’t have to decide which underwear, socks, jewelry, etc. to wear. I don’t know how other people handle these decisions. This is not an absolute rule, but is subject to other conditions. For example, my brown chinos would best match the t-shirt I’m wearing today, but I plan on wearing them Friday, because I’ll have an intern sitting with me that day (DON’T get me started on that, it’s gotten me in trouble before), and I wear chinos and a polo shirt on days when I’m Representing the Department, so I want to make sure they’re clean and available. (So you see, Nick, that’s what I’d be wearing on our ridealong. Unless you have other preferences.) I substituted jeans, which, they tell me, go with anything.

–I prefer to eat all of one thing on my plate, then all of the next thing, etc., so I don’t have to decide which one to take a bite of next. I eat the least-liked thing first (relatively-speaking, since I don’t eat anything I actually dislike) (first use of partial-word italics, wow!), then move on in ranked order, finishing with my favorite part of the meal. I’m not sure this is a wise strategy–what if I have a heart attack in the middle of the meal and die and never get to the best stuff?–but I feel disinclined to change it. I prefer not to have the different foods touching each other on the plate, and will usually avoid eating any that have mixed together. (My mother used to say, “Why do you care? They all mix together in your stomach.” Yeah, and how do we feel about them if we encounter them coming back up again, AM I RIGHT?)

Speaking of fashion (as I was, before I started speaking of vomit), did you know you could sprain your wrist carrying home fall fashion magazines? But I must do so, or how else would I know about the New Superstraight Hair? Luckily, I still have the Old Superstraight Hair on hand, or on head.

I saw a wolf spider on my porch, which was larger than I think a spider really needs to be. But, World Leader, they say, surely you’re going to tell us how these things reproduce, as you always do? Well, the female guards her egg sac (as “sack” is always spelled when you’re talking about what the Bible calls “living creatures which swarm upon the earth”), and in some species, when the spiderlings hatch, they crawl up on her back! How cute.

The Taco Johns I am currently eating bills itself as “The Best Part Of Your Day.” Hmm. I think the best part of my day was actually last night, watching an episode of “Sherlock” (interspersed, as always, with Rom poking me whenever Sherlock does something which reminds him of me). But no, that was before midnight. I’ll just have to report back at the end of the day. I think, to even be in the running, Taco Johns needs to cut back on their use of Lawry’s seasoned salt. (The above opinions are not those of Lawry’s.)

Welll…I was told my change was in the bottom of my bag, which I just threw out anyway. So now I’m digging through discarded food to get 6 cents. I lost heart after recovering the (now-greasy) nickel, though. But the knowledge that the penny is still in there is troubling me, and I can’t guarantee I won’t go back in after it. Did my horoscope say anything about spending the day digging through the bottom of containers? I’ll be rummaging in dumpsters next.


–“macaroni and cheese”

–“atmospheric haze”


Captured At Last

Yes, the Beast has now been in my home. How was he lured? With slabs of charred meat, of course.

Before they arrived, we cop-proofed the house (similar to child-proofing–lock the cabinets, put sharp objects out of reach, etc.).

His handler, Cinderella Sam, brought him by after dark, so he couldn’t see the tree in the back from that last frightening adventure. The cage car was parked on the street rather than in my driveway–I suppose because they thought they were only staying for a few minutes, the more fool them.

Once dragged inside the house, he kept looking up at the ceiling, fearing a net would drop down and trap him. Actually, I had put the nets away because we didn’t expect our guests to arrive so late. (If the nets aren’t taken down and cleaned regularly, they collect spiderwebs. Nick was once stalked by a rabid spider which had to be shot, so it wasn’t worth risking a traumatic flashback.)

After throwing pork steaks in his general direction, and tossing small pink cupcakes for dessert, he grabbed my jar of chocolate chips, dragged them into the corner, and growled when approached. To distract him, I grabbed the nearest thing to hand–a tube of lip balm–and held it up. “Look! It’s purple!” He raised his head, eyes gleaming, and I grabbed the candy jar back before he could bite me. Then he gathered himself for a spring, so–distraction is so important!–I rolled the lip balm toward him, and he snapped it up at once and swallowed it. “It’s vanilla-flavored! Do you have a chocolate one?”

“No more chocolate for you,” I said hastily. “Let’s tour the house, shall we?”

He sniffed all around my office–the computer particularly fascinated him. “Is this where your stories come from?” I was afraid he would try to mark it in some manner, but, being a neat and cleanly beast, he contented himself with trying to look behind the screen to find the stories.

The bedroom was next. He was so excited to see my bed that he leaped up on it and began chasing his tail, and getting the sheets all rucked up, until Sam finally made him get down. I’m glad she did. I don’t know what we would have done if he’d decided to curl up on it.

There are some additional details, involving, well, apple ale, and a spider that tried to sit on my lap and made me hide behind Nick until Rom had killed it, but I’m leaving those out, because it’s my party and I’ll selectively edit what I want to.

I developed quite the headache before bedtime. When I told Nick about it the next day, he said, “People often get withdrawals after I leave.” As Saki said about a bratty child, I should like to spank him forever, stopping, of course, at mealtimes.

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