SPIDER! SPIDER!

No sooner had I stepped into the shower this morning, when a spider the size of a beachball crawled up the inner shower curtain. So I did what any (self-respecting) arachnophobe would do: I screamed and thrashed.

This, as you might imagine, attracted the attention of my menfolk who, knowing that I have suffered from bouts of vertigo for the last 30 years, pictured the worst.

In burst my husband, who found me on one end of the bathtub, shrieking, “SPIDER! SPIDER!

What he heard was, “FIRE! FIRE!

He couldn’t imagine how there could be a fire in the bathtub while I was taking a shower, but he figured that such a fire, if it existed, must surely be taking place on the opposite end of the bathtub from where I cowered. He thrust open the shower curtain accordingly.

Which pushed the spider closer to me.

Whereupon I screamed again. Louder. And closed the curtain. Now I cowered at the other end of the bathtub.The arachnid, undeterred by the mammalian song and dance, continued its morning vertical constitutional.

“It’s at the top! Right there!” I pointed, too rattled to realize that my husband, while a reasonably competent and mature male, is not Superman, doesn’t have x-ray vision, and can’t see through two layers of shower curtain. He managed to get the idea, however, and grabbed the general area with a towel, thinking to crush the thing.

When he took his hand away, I spotted a spider-shape crawling between the two layers of shower curtain, about 2/3 of the way up. By now, I’m frothing. “IT’S BETWEEN THE CURTAINS! RIGHT THERE!”

My husband flung open the shower curtain again. This time, the spider flew into the air. I screamed.

The spider, meanwhile, vanished into wherever it is spiders go when they don’t want you to see them.

My husband grabbed a towel from the linen closet and offered it to me. “I’ll find the spider and take care of it. Go wait in our bedroom.”

I took the towel — and spotted the spider, five feet from its last known position, crawling up the linen closet door. I… Yes. I screamed. My husband whirled and slammed his towel into the door on top of the hapless spider. Then he turned back to me.

“Go wait in our room,” he said. “I’ll take care of it.”

I went. After all, my husband, Spider-Hunter Extraordinaire, was on the case.

The toilet flushed.

Shortly after that, he joined me in the bedroom. “Boy,” he said. “That spider was hard to kill.”

I blanched.

“But you can finish your shower now. The bathroom is safe.”

Score one for the Spider Hunter.