Wednesday, 17 June 2009

127 The Dangers of Painting

Crikey, Chief!

Whilst painting in The Shed t'other night my eye was briefly the biggest spider I've ever seen outside of a glass tank. Vis:
I encountered one big-ass spider*.

NB: Please note the importance of hyphenation above. Had I written "I encountered one big ass-spider" the meaning would have shifted entirely. I chose to avoid the ambiguity of not hyphenating. Hmm... I might use this example in class tomorrow.

I'm not squeamish about such beasties, and our cottage (naturally enough) does have a propensity to attract them...but still - this guy was big.

I know, likewise, that many of you reading this from almost any other part of the world will have genuinely big and dangerous animals on the loose, but do please appreciate my concern: this fellow must've been fully three inches across and jet black, and that's simply not cricket. Seriously, I was fully expecting him to march off with the barbecue. Or me.

I say 'him', but given the three trillion baby spiders currently pootling around in the webs I share The Shed with, 'he' could well be a very proud 'she'.

In the UK our most dangerous animal is commonly considered to be the (fractionally venemous) adder, and our most vicious predator? - The badger. I simply shouldn't have to put up with such monstrosities in my shed!

Right then: back to work avoidance.

- Drax.

* Excuse the US 'ass' in lieu of 'arse'. Some phrases just work better that way!


  1. Well, I don't like spiders at all, but there is one I sometimes met when walking around where I live. That one is nice (and similar to the one you found!)

    Spiders... brrrrrrrrr!

  2. I'm far too terrified of spiders. When I would find them lurking around my hobby area the only recourse for me to take after managing to calm myself down from screaming like a ninny is to grab an aerosol can and a lighter, head back to the war-zone, and PURGE THE UNCLEAN.

    After several years of this, I think word has gotten around their abominable kind that I am not a hobbyist to be effed with, ...and also the fire thing. Fine by me.

    ... also, the word verification I just got is "uvagin" ... is your blog trying to tell me something Drax?

  3. Hey, at least it wasn't a slug. *shudders*

  4. This post made me laugh so much mate. Ass-spider haha! Yes I am easily pleased, and no, not by ass-spiders.

    I also just realised how terrifying some of our 'deadly' creatures are. A bloody badger.

    I had a pretty big spider run across my bed once. I screamed. It's ok though my parents think it was my brother.

    @Darksol - I've noticed a few strange words come up here too but that has to be one of the funniest! Mine is bollymel... This is becomming less about 40k and more about ethnical eroticism...

  5. As soon as you wrote big-ass spider I shifted the hyphen... it's a bad habit of mine brought about by this:

  6. Dude I live in the southwestern corner of Canada, and yesterday a young girl was attacked by a cougar, (or Puma, or Mountain Lion). I don't like spiders either (and as a plumber work with them in crawlspaces), but they are better than Cougars, or Grizzlys oh my.

    My confirmation word says Hater. Thats fairly 40k, and also fitting as I am a stone cold player hater.

  7. Hah! I hear ya Drax - no spider larger than a dime has a right to life in my book. I'll leave 'em along if they're up in a corner eating the occasional bug, but woe betide any spider that strays into combat range.

    There are spiders in South America that leap out of trees and eat birds. There's just no call for that sort of thing!

  8. hahahaha... classic... bugs I can handle, my problem is snakes... doesn't matter what type. They just get to me. I think it's some deep rooted psyche thing.

    My word is rearoll... Drax I think it's time to put a mature rating on your comment sections ;)

  9. I'm a firefighter, and I'm in an attic of a house that was on fire. Crawling through the smoke, visibility zero, a spider suddenly appeared on my facemask, and I almost flipped out. Oh the irony. (and it was dead too.)

  10. Isn't it strange that in a world full of the horrific that occur on an everyday basis, the one thing that still makes me scream, jump back and clutch my throbbing chest in panic is the sudden sight of a small insect skittering across the floor or clinging to a wall? Out of all the things nature has decided to evolutionary hand down to us, it's this quite irrational (in this age of bug sprays, manicured lawns and climate-controlled homes) fear of tiny creepy-crawlers. Hmm, makes me wonder if maybe 100,000 years ago, insects were the size of automobiles?

  11. Ahh spiders. a good reason to keep a squirt bottle of Isopropyl Alcohol on hand.

    I fully understand their ecological niche, but growing up in Southern Illinois, (which should also be known as the land of nasty poisonous critters) where both the Brown recluse (lives in dry areas), and Black Widows (lives in damp areas) are common. I was always wary of ALL spiders.

    I about pissed myself when I was 11, and a 2" wolf spider jumped 1.5ft onto my leg while I was in the barn.
    I have been known to go out of my way to kill 'threatening' looking spiders ever since.

    then again, I was the designated bumblebee hive hunter in my family. give me a squrit can of deisel and I'll take down that rogue hive.

    Hmm my word is rapsy... interesting

  12. Hehe, a similar thing happenned to me while I was in the bath the other day. Spider appeared right next to my head as I was relaxing... He got thrown out the window.

  13. Solidarity, folks - solidarity.

    Oh, and thanks for that, eek - you're now officially my favourite person-I-don't-actually-know.


  14. Hmmm. If it weren't for customs I could try to ship you some largish wolf spiders from here in North Texas. They might gobble your little friend up. Of course, then you'd have big-ass wolf spiders in your shed. Still, the enemy you know, right?

    Since it's the cool thing to do, my verification word is, "laweedo".

  15. good old ass-spiders. Always getting in the way. :D

  16. I just saw the bugger again!

    Next time I'm out there at night I'm going to take my camera.

    Or an elephant gun!

    - Drax.

  17. Better a spider than a rabid Badger, those things are nasty!

  18. The spiders and I have a deal. They leave me alone, and I leave them alone. But the price of them showing death.

    But one minor thing re: the use of "ass" or "arse," that maybe one of you Brits across the pond could answer for me...

    In watching some Britsh shows there would be liberal use of the word "ass", but it sounded more like "ahss", which I at first attributed to just a difference in pronunciation. In a epiphany I realized they might actually be saying "arse", and just not pronouncing the "r".

    So I guess my question is, how do you native Brits pronounce the two words (ass and arse) differently?

  19. Yay!

    You are correct, sir. The British English word is 'arse', though obviously the saturation of US terms through the media has had a huge impact on the spread of the US 'ass' which - frankly - is often fun to use in its own right.

    The confusion may in part arise because over here we tend not to pronounce post-vocalic 'r' sounds in discreet syllables. The main exception is regional accents from the South West (Somerset, Devon, Cornwall etc., known as the West Country) which often do. The standard (and prestige) pronunciation of 'farm' is FAHM, but here in the South West it's FARM.

    One of the main contributary reasons the US Eng pronunciation pronounces the 'r' is probably because many of the original colonists were from the West Country (the original Plymouth, for example, is down here) - and it appears the pattern of migration across the US continent led the vestiges of the West Country accents to influence what's become your Southern accents (not so much the French bits, obviously).

    Today, the West Country accent is seen as being 'backward', 'slow' and 'rustic' - for comedy examples, watch 'Hot Fuzz'.

    So yes: it's hte British term (and colloquial spelling is 'arse' pronounced 'AHSS'.

    Though it's worth also noting the north/south divide on the flat/rounded pronunciation of the 'a' sound.

    - Drax.

  20. Well, I'm from the Boston area, so the locals around here don't pronounce their r's either. "Pahk the cah in Hahvahd yahd" and all that.

    We do occasionally (ok, rarely) use the term "arse", but when we do, we do pronounce the 'r' so as to make it clear we're saying something other than 'ass'.

    New Yohkers don't pronounce the r's either, but their vowels come out a little different.

    Both groups sound less cultured than the Queen's English Brits though because of our laziness with the consonants:

    Take the word "water."
    British (Received Pronunciation): "watuh"
    Boston (US): "waduh"
    New York (US): "wawduh"

    Now I have to watch Hot Fuzz again. :)

  21. Spoken like a true linguist, Drax!

    word evrification: solsitif. Fitting, as I'm going to a solstice party tonight.

  22. Yay! Thanks, Saranga!

    And there are no slugs here. Honest.

  23. Its a right jungle out there, you be careful!

    Had a scorpion crawling across the floor while I was working in Aus the other week, was tiny but nice and black so a good chance it could do some damage - he was straight outside using the dustpan and brush.


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