Forget killer viruses, fires, superduperhurricanes or murder hornets. Russia has been invaded. America is next.
It hates you. And it's coming for you. Free for commercial use photo from PxFuel
Sochi, Russia, became Ground Zero for a massive Spider Invasion last year. Hordes of giant killer spiders invaded Russian homes in this subtropical city (who knew Russia had subtropical anything?), terrorizing the locals.
Okay, I might be exaggerating a little. They’re about three centimeters long, so I guess, technically speaking, that doesn’t compare well to real giant spiders, like you find in Australia.
Also, it’s not, maybe, hordes of spiders, just a farkava lot of ’em. And they’re not human extermination armies. Entomologists, people who study things with more than four proper legs and whom you don’t want to talk up at cocktail parties lest something horrible crawl out from their shirtsleeves, say they’re harmless wolf spiders, that they pose no threat to humans and their bite is about the same as a bee sting.
Pardon me, but doesn’t BITE suggest a real danger to humans? And ever been stung by a bee? I was, last summer. My foot swelled up and itched for days. It was horrifyingly traumatic.
Okay. Exaggerating again. It was horrifyingly annoying. But still.
Spiders. BITE. That’s all I have to hear to cross Sochi, Russia, off my bucket list. (Okay, exaggerating again. I’ve never had the desire to visit Sochi, especially after the Olympics debacle. But now I have even less of a desire. And then there's the whole war they started in Ukraine. Like, everyone would hate me if I gave them my tourist money. But, I'll be honest. The spiders keep me away from Russia more than the Evil Empire thing.)
These entomologists note Sochi’s new housemates might actually do some good while they’re living there rent- and mortgage-free. They may not be much of a danger to humans (apart from the BITING stuff) but they do eat midges, cockroaches and fleas.
Look, I don’t care if they eat Republicans. I don’t care if they eat unmasked white-sheeted swastika-bearing Plague-carrying MAGA morons. I don’t want three-centimeter-large spiders in my apartment. EVER. Even if they all sign waivers promising never, ever to bite me.
If I find Republicans in my apartment, that’s what the Raid is for, and I’m going to have a word or two with Border Control since I live in Canada.
The spiders’ weird behavior may be a symptom of climate change, or it could be they’re horny little bastards who just need a warm, dry place to mate. Because, you see, it’s mating season for Sochi’s aroused arachnids. So don’t worry, Russkies, they won’t stick around, they’ll just use your home for a quick in-and-out, bum a cigarette, and maybe cart off a vodka bottle or two, but then they’re gone and out of your hair.
(I know, nightmare-inducing mental image!)
This isn’t the first climate change-induced spider invasion shot across the bow for an increasingly creeped-out humanity.
In 2012, the Australian town of Wagga Wagga (and that’s pronounced WOGGA WOGGA, not WAGGA WAGGA, as an Ozzie friend archly informed me, despite the fact that it’s spelled WAGGA WAGGA and not WOGGA WOGGA and is without question the world’s stupidest town name) got invaded by giant horrible evil brain-destroying monster spiders from hell, I suspect because Wagga Wagga must have been a very, very bad town in a former lifetime. A sillier explanation holds that the horrible beasts relocated to higher ground after a flood.
Just to put things in perspective, this apocalypse was prophesied in what was once thought to be a cheezy horror movie but is now understood to be an insightful documentary, 1975’s The Giant Spider Invasion, set in the mythical state of Wisconsin:
Giant spiders have a big thing for polyester pantsuits. Avoid them, Ozzies!
Not to put too fine a point on it, but there was a more recent ‘horror movie’ (read: explosive documentary) on what happens when spiders go all Hell’s Angels on an entire town, 2002’s Eight Legged Freaks:
So anyway, God’s wrath of horrid little frightmonsters snowed on southern Australia, dropping down in white billowy hellwebs from the sky, literally coating poor Wagga Wagga with web sheets filled with, ugh, bazillions of flood water refugees.
You know what? I’ll take the Murder Hornets any day.
Crikey, some might argue that Wagga Wagga’s Boschian nightmares aren’t exactly giant spiders at 1–6 millimeters, they’re merely ‘money’ spiders or ‘sheet-web weavers’ (that jump!), but it’s only Australians who say ‘merely’, because they’re grateful the little futhermuckers aren’t the normal Volkswagen-sized beasts that customarily terrorize tourists. Listen, I know about ‘merely’. I grew up in Florida where we had big ugly demonic fiends — ‘merely’ garden spiders. Some of the beasts had pretty colors but I maintain that any spider bigger than a dime is a Big Ugly Spider even if it’s got a friggin’ original Picasso on its huge tank-like back.
Yes, Floridian spiders’ eyes gleam with Satanic evil, are armoured like a Sherman tank and will fucking kill you if you so much as entertain a fleeting thought of pulling your shoe off. Image by Ray Shrewsberry from Pixabay
My mother said there was a spider web between two trees outside my bedroom window when I was a baby, and she tried to hose it down, but the web was too strong, and then she tried a flame-thrower but it was still too strong, and it even survived her small tactical nuke. So she sent out the big guns — or rather, the big pole — in the capable hands of my father, who made short work of the aerial lair and the vicious lemon-sized beast Mom swears had glowing eyes and giant fangs. But, you know, Mom’s even more arachnophobic than I, so she might have exaggerated a wee bit.
I used to watch something like the little dude to the right hanging off a bush outside our church during the sermon and I thought that was a really scary-ass spider but clearly I’ve never been to Australia.
I will never move back to Florida, which suffers world-class hurricanes and floods and if millions of these murderous mutants moved into my living room in their tiny little rain slickers and bug-corpse-speckled umbrellas I’m leaving the whole damn galaxy!
Image by Jools Theriault from Pixabay
Wagga Wagga isn’t the only place with terrifying climate change-crazed spiders. A user on Reddit recently posted a photo of some monster who lives in his backyard who bears a striking resemblance to Aragog, the evil giant spider queen in the Harry Potter movies.
He doesn’t say where he lives. Which means…this mofo could be ANYWHERE. Maybe even in your hometown.
In your backyard.
Escaping, I don’t know, climate change or maybe it’s in lockdown or maybe just waiting for the next Trumpocalypse. The Horny Spider Invasion isn’t just happening in Russia. Wolf spiders, (spider wolves?) have invaded British homes looking for a shag ’n’ fag. This came just weeks after a massive British daddy longlegs invasion, in which bugs (not spiders) with legs as long as the Great Wall of China scoured British homes looking for mates.
Britain, too, was very bad in a former lifetime. Image by Henryk Niestrój from Pixabay
I’m not at all clear why spiders think anyone’s homes are bangalicious bug brothels, but who knows what those Brits really get up to behind closed doors, oi, mate?
So far, Canadians seem safe from horny spider invasions, maybe because it’s still too cold here, or because I live in Toronto, where the spiders are really boring, or because I live in a skyrise and they can’t climb this high (there’s a method to my madness!)
We might have stinkbugs. They’re a problem in New Hampshire, which is like a Great Lake and a state-and-a-half away from me, but I found one on my porch last week. (A stink bug, not a Great Lake.) It was hanging on the wall, not bothering anyone, and after a few hours I suspected it was dead. I didn’t poke it or anything to see, as I wasn’t sure if it could fly or not, but it must; how else could it have gotten up here? A few days later it was gone. So either it dried up, dropped to the floor and blew away or maybe it decided to quit loafing around and go get some stinkbug shit done.
Brace yourself, kids: Things are going to get EXTREMELY buggy in the next thirty years.
An international team of research scientists tasked with keeping the world in abject paranoia in case a vaccine is found for coronaviruses, Republicans, and other plagues of humanity, have determined that biological creepy-critter invasions are going to increase by a mind-boggling 36% by 2050.
This means ‘non-native’ insect species, so whatever shit’s been terrorizing Asia and Europe and maybe even Australia while we laugh and point our fingers at the other side of the globe, may be coming for your ass!
Europe’s gonna git it the worst, followed by Asia and then the Americas. The only North American creepy-crawly-lover on the team said the study will allow ‘a shift from a reactionary stance to a proactive stance in defending against biological invasion.’
Which means to me the Biden-Harris House damn well better have a plan to protect Americans not just from the Supreme Court and $20/pack toilet paper but from the Horny Spider Invasions to come.
Because spiders famously laugh in the face of Border Control when they're parachuting over the 49th Parallel in their Wagga-Wagga hellcloud balloons.
God has spoken, and He’s pissed at us for not taking better care of the Earth. He’s even getting all Biblical and shit elsewhere, not with spiders but with plagues of locusts on Africa, the Middle East and Southwest Asia. These ravenous little bastards can travel up to 150 km a day, or over 5,000 km if they hitch a ride on an airplane.
So, like, don’t think the oceans are stopping anybody from invading North America. Or from within.
Scientists suspect climate change may also be behind the recent invasion of venomous pus-shooting ‘walking toupee’ caterpillars in Virginia, customarily found farther south but now on the northern move because, well, who’s going to stop them?
Stinging flannel moth caterpillar image by Andreas Kay on Flickr. Do not pet these. DO NOT PET THESE.
Scientists believe there are two primary climate-related explanations for why insects, arachnids, and a lot of larger, furrier wildlife are migrating, bringing with them our next possible pandemic .
Changing weather is modifying insect traits and also impacting their food, natural enemies and predators.
Rising and falling temperatures affect arthropods (insects, spiders, anything with a bunch of legs and an exoskeleton) and so do weather events like floods and droughts. They’re on the march to escape imminent death, predators and to find food.
So, all laughs aside, climate change’s impact on insect populations means humanity is about to get up close and personal with creepy-crawlies in the coming decades.
And speaking of coming, you might want to stock up on cigs and beer. The last thing you want is a spider getting peevish on a host unprepared for post-coital spider bliss.
Aaaaaahhhh, a spider bite is no worse than a bee sting.
This first appeared on Medium.