Monday, June 16, 2008

Better Living through Technology

I woke up this morning to discover a spider in my bathtub. As faithful readers of this blog may recall, such discoveries are not simply resolved chez Howard, the smush-and-flush approach being admired but not practiced in these parts and the cats being no help whatsoever. And so this morning, lacking time for an elaborate spider-relocation ritual, I heaved a sigh and trudged off to work showerless.

It wasn't until I returned home that I remembered last year's favorite Christmas gift leaning neglected in the corner--my very own spider-relocator! My Christmas-day experiments with the plastic dummy spider had been promising; nonetheless, now that the time had come to put it to the test with a living, scuttling arachnid, I was plagued with doubt. Would it be too forceful, leaving me with a gruesome lump of ex-spider mashed against the filaments? Or, worse, would it be too weak, letting a live and angry spider escape unexpectedly?

I should have had more faith. The device worked beautifully, scooping up the spider in one neat whoosh, holding it gently but securely all the way through the apartment to the hall. (This was helped a bit by the poor spider's instinctively rolling itself into a defensive ball.) When I released it, the spider scampered off toward my neighbor's door, presumably a bit stressed but otherwise unharmed. It was nothing short of amazing. I almost wish there were another spider in the bathtub so I could give it a second try.