Q: What is more terrifying than a scorpion?
A: A scorpion that you thought was dead but turns out to be an angry, un-dead scorpion out for revenge.
Have you ever seen one of those horror movies where it’s getting close to the end and the heroes finally kill the monster…but it was a little too easy? And as they’re casually high-fiving each other and turn their backs on the monster you want to scream, “Look out! He’s not dead yet!”, and sure enough, he suddenly comes back to life to terrorize them a bit more before the movie ends.
That’s kind of how it went down around here this morning.
The exterminator came yesterday, and it would appear that his fancy chemicals worked (or perhaps the scorpions all killed themselves after hearing one too many unsolicited opinions). This morning I walked into my dining room to see the disturbing-yet-somehow-satisfying sight of a dead scorpion on my living room floor.
Now, Old Jen would have covered it with some heavy object for my husband to deal with when he came home. But I am now New Very Holy and Catholic Jen who selflessly does things to help others, so I decided to scoop the thing up myself so that my husband has one less thing to do when he comes home tonight. I calmly, gracefully grabbed a sheet of paper and bent down to slide it under the curled up, dead scorpion. I pictured it sliding onto the paper like a dead leaf for me to whisk over to the toilet.
As soon as the paper touched it it unrolled into a much larger, much angrier, much less dead scorpion who was now running around just stinging everything in sight. New Very Holy and Catholic Jen let out a blood-curdling scream, uttered a slew of profanity that would make a sailor blush, threw a book on the thing and called my husband to shriek at him about dealing with it as soon as he walks through the door tonight.
This is, however, the final data point I needed to prove once and for all that the sole purpose of scorpions’ existence is “to be creepy”. Some examples:
- They evidently have a penchant for only pretending to be dead (see above).
- They glow in the dark.
- They just look creepy with those pincers and that stinger-tail.
- Their venom is specifically formulated to be painful.
- They seem to hang out in beds and shoes a lot. Other nasty insects like roaches or spiders usually have the decency to confine themselves to kitchens or garages or attics, but it would appear that the primary habitat for Centruroides vittatus is “the beds and shoes of people who know Jennifer F.”
And, finally, I recently read that fossil records indicate that these things have been hanging out being creepy for like 450 million years. They have an incredibly high tolerance to radiation and it’s thought that nothing short of inter-planetary collision could wipe them out. So you kind of get the feeling that though I may have conquered them here in my house, the rest of them are thinking, “Whatever. In the end, we win.”
[Administrative Note: I have finally come to terms with the fact that I will not be able to shut up about this until the last scorpion is gone from my house, so I have created a Scorpions category and will be updating the older posts.]
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