Sunday, August 30, 2015

Sunday Spiders

It's a cold, rainy Sunday.  Time to get a few chores done around the house after getting more crash pad stuff unpacked. Abby will want some walking but after that some clean up as with both of us being gone much of the summer that chowed  in the cobwebs and dust bisons in some areas of the Range.

But there were more pressing things  than dusting and vacuuming that came to mind. Saturday night.  As we were quietly sipping some 16 year old Glenlivit and watching Dr. Who, the smell of skunk become suddenly obvious. Abby was barking like mad but I knew better than to let her out. The smell was from the front of the house, under the porch.  Looks like Mr. Skunk has found a nice place to hang his hat.

Now there are ways to deal with critters that take up residence under the porch, including. but not limited to, the Redneck Range Critter Round Up Package.
But a skunk, being striker fired, needs a little more stealthy plan. The east end of the basement lays against the back of the porch. so today, a a really loud radio will play there to convince Mr. Skunk he out to sleep elsewhere during the day. Let's see if I can find a station with Polka Music or Justin Beiber. If that doesn't work, there's always CNN.

Til then, It's going to take time to get the smell out of the walk-out basement.  Time for some cross ventilation
But in getting the fan, I found that the skunk was the least of my worries.   There was a large assortment of spiders that took advantage of the absence of traffic and set up shop, in the shop.

I don't like to harm the  household ones that eat insects, carefully moving the Daddy Long Legs and such out of the house back into the garden.  But the large nasty ones that like the shop, one of which is the size of a Volkswagen Beetle, as well as the risk of Brown Recluses, calls for different tactics. 
I think I'm ready - -

A Pilots Guide to Spider Alert
1. Sanitize flight suit and personal possessions - Check
2. Intelligence - Not much if I'm chasing large spiders with herbal hippie oil
(a). Threats - There's mud, there's nails, there's cobwebs all over the place.
3. SAR procedures - Swatter 11 is ready!
4. Interphone and Radio discipline - No live twitter of jumping spiders
5. Threat Calls - Break Left!  Bogie 1 o'clock! Just seems to be hanging there!
6. Wounded crewmember procedures - Bactine!  Check!
7. Low-level emergencies -  Holy (*#@ one just ran out from under the TR6
8. Battle damage reporting and procedures -  Maybe the broom and the ladder wasn't the best idea
9. Use of lights - The Roar of the Pelican may be small but it doesn't have a 250 knot speed restriction
10. Emergency load jettison procedures - Frankly if one of those wolf spiders jumps on me, there will be a load jettisoned and not in a good way.
11. Bailout procedures  -RUN AWAY!  RUN AWAY!
12. Crash landing/ditching procedures and egress - Everyone to the beer cooler!
13. Ground evacuation  -  see above
14. Use of equipment: parachutes, LPU’s, survival vests, body armor - I have rum,  matches and a large roll of paper towels
15. Altered/non-standard procedures: Slowdown, Random approaches, Escape -

"Tam?  Want to come over for dinner? There's Brisket. 
No, no special reason.  Oh, and bring a flame thrower".

16. Chemical environment -  Why does my shop smell like a Shamrock Shake now?


  1. Smoke the affected area (carefully, carefully) with smoldering rope; it covers skunk scent pretty well. Follow that with Febreze to hide the smoke smell. Don't burn your house down in the process.

  2. We have a local spider species with a body the size of a nickle, dark brown coloring, and spins a web each night right after dusk. Before sunrise, it eats the web and goes into hiding, until the next evening.

    The babies ride the mother's back, until they reach a certain age. They're interesting to see, but not so much if you happen to bump into the mother, which causes them to scatter...onto anything my shoulder, when I bumped into a crepe myrtle; years ago, while cutting the yard.

    Horrified is the best description of my reaction. Numerous panicked brushes at my shoulder didn't seem to remove nearly enough, so I was half naked, before it was all over.

    I spent the next few hours thinking there was at least one crawling somewhere on my body.

  3. Hahaha! Bring a flamethrower, no doubt Tam would do that for you.

  4. come clean out my garage great job!!!

  5. Hah, reminds me of an incident over the summer.....I'd spent the day rack diving at work (which isn't nearly as fun as it sounds and involves lots of words I'm not supposed to use around the customers). On my way home suddenly a little itsy bitsy made a controlled drop from my hair infront of my eyes.

    I did manage to not wreck the car at least. But when I got home the first thing I did was strip and take a shower.....

  6. You are a crock! Love it. We had a skunk event with the friend's rescue dogs (11 Brittanys) last week. She needed lots of help to "production line" wash dogs, then the people needed to be decontaminated. *sigh* Daughter, Catherine, was there to help. Fortunately, I'm out to sea while this was going on at the friend's house. I got to hear about it without smell-o-vision. .

    Nice to be able to stop in on a Sunday while we're in a US port. All the very best.


  7. have found vinegar as being a good cure for the elimination of perfume du eau skunk. mixed in spray bottle to clean dog up, covered the eyes to spray around face. feline quadrupeds were good for spider control along with oil of peppermint.

  8. Spidies don't usually bother me, but the tarantulas that hung around the horse stalls at college did. They made a real crunchy sound when you stomped on one... that is if you didn't nearly beat yourself to death with the poop shovel first.

  9. Can't help with the skunk smell but a .32 S&W Long case, small pistol primer, 2/10 grain of Bullseye and stuffed to the mouth with dry grits will blow anything up to and including the size of a wolf spider to tiny, hairy little bits. If you don't have a .32 S&W Long revolver handy, maybe Tam will bring one along :-)

  10. At least two companies have legal flame throwers available. I figured yours was on order for this situation. :)

    Search XM42 on YouTube.

    BTW. I forget. Did I send the "Robin Hood" episode? Once you've seen that, the rest of last year's season is meh until the finale.

  11. And among we spiderphobes, the flame thrower is seen as just the starter kit.

    Having the mortars ready with Willy P is the first step in the back up plan.

    When I was a child, we returned home from a short vacation, and I told my parents there were spiders in my room. When my screaming woke up the family and they flipped on the lights, there were spiders in my bed.

    The expression screamed like a little girl may have been coined when someone heard my voice after an unexpected spider encounter.

    And I am sure I have mastered either teleportation or faster than light travel when I am moving rapidly away from the spider.

    I really, really do not like spiders.

  12. My least favorite is to blindly walk into an Orb-spinner web. You know, those big webs suspended along trails or between your tree and your car door? The ones with the really big fat-bodied spider somewhere in them? Yeah, those I HATE!

  13. When in doubt, nuke it from orbit... Just sayin...

  14. I've found my shop vacuum with LONG extensions on the hose works well for getting the cobwebs out of the garage rafters, and elsewhere in the house.

    And when you're done, spray a little insect killer into the hose right before you shut it off. It kills them inside so they don't come roaring out when you go to dump it.

  15. (When I was married) used to have a 'gentlemen's agreement' with the Wife.
    She killed the black widows; I killed the sewer roaches.

    Also, those petite 'flamethrowers' one uses to crisp Creme Brulee make black widows just POP!

  16. Fit the weapon to the job, folks. This guy shoots salt. It can take down a fly on the wing at 5 feet, I imagine it can take out a spider.

  17. As young men my buddy and I were Robert Ruark fans. Last Fall (or so it seems) we were quail hunting down by the creek when a skunk came out from behind a downed log, presented his posterior to us, and, I swear moved backwards in our direction. My buddy,having been influenced by the tales of the Great White Hunter standing the charge of Cape Buffalo, raised his 20 gauge and fired at the same instant as the skunk.
    Eau de skunk is different when directly applied to the face from close range than the odor you get from a respectable distance.
    Within seconds my buddy was down on his hands and knees and attempted, for about ten minutes, to puke up his vital organs.
    I had beat a hasty retreat and survived the encounter unscathed.
    One of my high school friends trapped skunks and harvested their scent glands for spending money. He sold them to a perfume manufacturer.
    We had our deer rifles in the Easy Rider gun racks of our pick-ups in the school parking lot and no one thought a thing about it. Times have changed.


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