Jan 012010
 

This doesn’t have anything to do with paper or art. But since I started this blog nearly a year ago mentioning the black widows in my studio, I thought I’d kick off the new year with another black widow in the studio story. Yesterday afternoon I reached behind my cutting table to grab a piece of cardboard. Suddenly, a you-know-what was scurrying toward my hand.

Mercifully, she then turned and ran like hell in the other direction. Still, one does not want to be holding a piece of cardboard with a startled black widow running around on it. I caught her and put her outside.  I imagine she’s left some cousins and sisters and maybe an egg sack or two behind. They hide well.

So I was amused to run across this old story on the BBC today. They’re so common around here. Apparently, they are quite a rare sensation when they show up in Wales.

700 eggs in the egg sack?

Mar 052009
 

Several of these ladies share my studio (which is a converted garage) with me. I have nothing against them. They don’t actually bother me much (I like spiders). However, given that black widows like to live and hide behind boxes, and that my studio is filled with . . . er, boxes, I’ve decided it’s time for the arachnid equivalent of U-Haul (well, that and the fact that one was running past my toes when I looked down the other day). So, tomorrow I’m hiring somebody to come over to help with black widow removal (nobody wanted to volunteer—go figure).

The last time I cleaned the studio and evicted spiders, I fell so ill afterward that I wound up at the hospital the next day. My husband, aided with a home health manual and the Internet, came to the conclusion that I must’ve been bitten by a black widow. (More likely, it was food poisoning.)

I’ll let you know how it goes.