Flattie spider

Waiting to ambush

I walked into the laundry room casually flipping on the light and stopped with heart pounding. A large flat spider hugged the floor, absolutely still. Although I try to carry bugs-found-indoors outside for release, these flat spiders are too fast to handle. I looked about for a weapon, and spotted the nearby tennis shoe. When I looked back, he was gone. As much as I appreciate all of Nature’s critters, spiders in the house give me the creeps.
When I was little my brother had a bug collection, where exotic little bodies lay forever still on a large display of cardboard wrapped in black velvet. I begged him to let me see it, and pored over the tiny details, carried away by the gruesomeness of death. Butterflies, beetles, centipedes and spiders rested in careful rows, each stabbed through with a large shiny pin. Eventually Mom forbade me to see the bug collection, because the following night I always had nightmares. I still have a reocurring spider dream, where I open my eyes to see a particularly horrifying looking spider crawl across the bed near my pillow. I’ve jumped out of bed in fright.
I didn’t have it in me to search the laundry room for this flat spider, hopefully he would find his way out the same way he got in. Sure enough he showed up in the garage a few days later. Officially called the Salenopid crab spider, you might want to just call him Flattie. He’s going to see you coming, because he has six eyes, and his eight legs are poised in a classic creepy posture. Mainly found in the Southwest, this crevice dweller waits in ambush for his prey. He moves sideways at lightning speed. Flattie is harmless to humans and consumes lots of other bugs. After looking at loads of spiders on the Internet to get an identification, I can only hope for no nightmares tonight.


4 responses to “Flattie spider

  1. Interesting we have quite a few flattie spiders in our home they are like family pets. I have a picture of a flattie consuming a biggish blue fly which seems impossible considering their bodies are so flat.The only problem they cause is when theset off the alarm when crawling over a sensor.

  2. How I can relate! I am not afraid of many things but spiders are at the top of the list of the few things I dread running into….tried to desensitize myself by holding a pet tarantula…sort of worked but it was more like a mouse. I, too, had a bug collection but could never bring myself to do the spider thing…eeeeewh,
    Nice piece of writing,,,took me back and gave me the creeps!

  3. joan peterson

    Wow! Scary!! I’m impressed that you could just go off and leave it altho that sounds like the right thing as it escaped. Was it as big as a quarter or larger? Glad we don’t have to worry up here. Mom

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