By Shannon Frost Greenstein

Let’s set the scene.

It’s Redding, California, a town in the northern part of the state.  It’s a typical day.  Life is progressing as it typically does, except in the home of our protagonist.  A protagonist who is, most likely, arachnophobic.  A protagonist who will remain nameless, for reasons you will soon see, as it’s probably mighty embarrassing to be this particular protagonist.

And in the home our our protagonist, there is…a spider.

Now, at least for me, this justifies some panic.  There would be yelling.  There might be some jumping on chairs or frantic phone calls to the husband, asking him to come home and remove it.

You know what it does NOT justify, though?  It does NOT justify a blowtorch.

But that is indeed what happened in Redding, California, when an individual tried to kill a spider that way.

As you can probably guess, things didn’t go well, and the spider…now on fire… ended up running into a pile of bedding and setting the apartment house ablaze.  Believe it or not, the poor flaming spider caused $11,000 worth of damage.  That’s an eleven with three zeroes, all because someone didn’t think to use a shoe.

LUCKILY, no one was hurt in the fire, and it was successfully extinguished after about fifteen minutes.  But let this be a lesson, listeners…the weapon with the least possible potential for disaster should always be used with any spider situation, not the one that, you know, shoots fire.

No word yet on how red this individual’s face was, but you can bet that absolutely no more spiders will DREAM of entering their now-smoldering home.  He or she earns an A for effort, but a D – in not lighting things on fire.

We can’t all be A students, though.


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