Sunday, June 26, 2011

There's probably a moral to this story.

In honor of my new followers (who I can't put names to because my followers widget is not working for some reason) I've decided to bring back an old favorite that I love telling and rereading over and over again because, even though it horrifies me, I still know it's funny. I originally posted this one back in the beginning of October when only Candice was following me.

It is no secret that I detest bugs in general, and that I fear them. Some people would call my fear irrational, but I think they're just being unfair. I think everyone secretly hates bugs. Some people would just rather not look silly by acting afraid of them. Well, I don't care how silly I look. Bugs should stay the hell away from me.

When I was eighteen, I was home from TSU and staying in my room at my grandparents' house. While I had been away at college they had rearranged my bedroom, moving my bed in front of the windows. I hate sleeping by windows. I'm afraid someone will trying to pull me out of it while I'm sleeping and kill me or something. (It's not funny: it happened to my aunt.) However, I wasn't strong enough to move the bed back myself. I weighed one hundred and two pounds and had absolutely no muscle to speak of, so for months I slept with the constant terror of being attacked in my sleep.

In February I started seeing a guy I'd met through my best friend, and I started spending two or three days a week with him. As it warmed up into spring, my grandparents started turning off the heater and opening the windows to air out the house. When I wasn't home, they opened my windows, too. I hated it, of course, and they didn't do it on the days I was home, but when I wasn't there they did it anyway.

I don't like my windows open because I don't like hearing the crickets at night. It's like they're mocking me and trying to psych me out. And it works. Which is why I like doors and windows closed at all times. One day I came home to find my windows open, and I closed them immediately. What I didn't realize was that the damage had already been done.

By that time, the guy I was seeing had officially become my boyfriend, and we talked on the phone every night before bed, even if it was just for a few minutes. (I believe you call this the honeymoon phase of new relationships.) At midnight, I told him I was tired and needed sleep.

He said, "Sleep tight, don't let the bed bugs bite." He always said that, and I thought it was kind of silly, but in an adorable way.

My reply was always, "Well, if they do, I'll bite them back."

When I settled down under the covers, I drifted off to sleep. I was out for a couple of hours when I woke up because I felt someone running their hand over my stomach under my tank top. My first thought was it was my boyfriend, but with a jolt of fear I remembered that I was at home and in bed alone. And as I realized this I felt the mysterious hand creep down my boxers and onto my inner thigh.

I was terrified. You can't imagine the agony of thoughts racing through my mind. I sat up as slowly as I could, trying to keep myself from screaming. I pushed back the covers and the moonlight from the open blinds fell on my pale leg. And a long, dark shape emerged from my boxers and slithered to mid-thigh.

That awful movie Slither popped into my head. You know, the one where the alien infects everyone with the slithery creepy snake things that go into their mouths and take control of them.

And I thought, "Oh my god, there's a snake in my bed and it's on me."

Somehow, I managed to keep myself from moving. Though unlikely, I thought it was probably a poisonous snake and if I moved it would bite me and I would die a horrible, painful death writhing in agony.

So I sat there perfectly still with my hands clenched so tightly my fingernails cut into my palms, waiting for my chance to escape. And after a few minutes in which I was sure I was going to die anyway and nobody would ever know how I'd died, the snake slipped off of my leg and onto the sheets between my knees. I could see it's outline against the dark red sheets, and I slid carefully backwards until there was enough room for me to get off of the bed and back up.

And as I was backing away from the bed, my braided hair moved against my neck and I thought there was another one on me. And I lost all of my self-control and started screaming bloody murder as I ripped my clothes off. And as all of the lights in the house came on, I tore across my room, still making that awful, bloodcurdling screech, and tried to open my bedroom door. Which was locked, and in my hysterical state I couldn't figure out how to unlock it, and my mother was banging on the door trying to get in as I was screaming on the other side trying to get out.

Finally, my sister's boyfriend, who had been staying the night, kicked in my bedroom door and I ran screaming past everybody, in nothing but my bikini underwear and completely topless, into the bathroom across the hall and slammed the door, locked it, and stuffed towels under the crack to keep more snakes from getting in.

Well, my family went into my room and turned on the light, expecting to find a rapist or something in there. Apparently, they found nothing. So they all tried to get me to come out of the bathroom to tell them what the hell had happened. By that time, my grandparents had made it down from their bedroom at the other end of the house, and they were all terrified that something had happened and the culprit had gotten away.

Eventually, I managed to say something to the effect of, "There's a snake in my bed! Kill it!"

And so they all went back to hunt up the snake. But they couldn't find anything. And after thirty minutes of me having hysterics in the bathroom, I finally calmed down enough to unlock the bathroom door and wrap a towel around myself and come out. I caught my reflection in the bathroom mirror as I was leaving. I was so white even my lips had no color, my eyes were wide and horror stricken. My whole body was shaking.

"Chanel, you had a bad dream. We promise, there's nothing in there. We checked."

My grandfather didn't sound angry. He was struggling to hide a smile, and I suddenly thought maybe I'd had one of my dreams that carried over to reality when I woke up. It wasn't the first time I'd woken my family up with my screams only to discover it had been a dream. So I apologized and went back into my room, feeling a little foolish for scaring the living hell out of everybody.

But as I was putting my boxers and tank top back on, I caught a slight movement out of the corner of my eye. I looked up, and there on the wall behind my bed was the longest, fattest South African Centipede I'd ever had the misfortune of seeing in my life. And I knew that IT had crawled into bed with me, probably attracted to my body heat, and that it had probably come in my window during the day while I wasn't home, and that the bed bugs could have bitten me.

Look at just looks deadly.

And it only took half a second for me to start screaming bloody murder again, and sure enough my family came running back and I pointed at the monstrosity on the wall and ran off, screaming I wasn't going back in until it was dead.

Well, those things are highly poisonous, and nobody wanted to brave going in there to try to kill it. And I was convinced that if it didn't die it was going to come after me and try to kill me in my sleep again ( which I had managed to convince myself was its plan the entire time: it wanted nothing more than  to kill me in my sleep) and it wouldn't rest until it succeeded.

I stuffed towels under the crack of my bedroom door so it couldn't escape, and I wrote a note and taped it to the door. "Danger: Ninja Assassin Centipede Captured and Being Held Within. Do Not Enter."

And nobody went into my bedroom for two weeks. I didn't even go in for clothes. I just borrowed my younger sisters' things because we wore the same size. I told my boyfriend about it the next day, an dhe laughed and said I was supposed to bite the bed bugs, not let them take over my room. I didn't find it funny, however, and we agreed not to talk about it.

After two weeks I felt convinced that the monster had either died or managed to escape, so I went back into my room. I found its dead, shriveled body in the middle of my carpet, looking tortured and miserable. I sprayed it with insect killer to make sure it wasn't just faking it, and then had my sister's boyfriend take it away.

But that day I went back in I had my bed moved to the other side of the room, and I put signs on my windows demanding that they never be opened again. And I never, never went to bed again without searching my room for hidden assassins.

And that night added another logical reason for me to hate creepy crawlies. And I just have to wonder...why is it always me? Things like this NEVER happen to my sisters, and it's unfair.


  1. Oh, I see. I tried to leave a comment on the other post and it would go through. Now I see why. It was all about how how I would burn my house down and take a thousand showers if one of those things crawled on me (I looked up pictures). Then I said I was getting massive deja vu from the post title for some reason. The I said the line "I sprayed it with insect killer to make sure it wasn't just faking it.." was completely you. Then I think there was a recipe for cancer-curing cookies or something.

    There you go. That's the abridged version.

  2. Blogger kept ruining it! I don't know why. First it just completely deleted the picture, then it wouldn't let me justify everything and kept killing the page, then the actual words were the wrong color and font, then it kept putting the picture at the top, and FINALLY I fixed it but it wasn't easy. And wouldn't you know it...the opening paragraph is still the wrong font and color. *sigh*

    I might have had a similar title...or maybe it's because I posted the thing three different times before it actually worked almost properly.

    Blogger is being a butthead today.

    I hope you never have one of the suckers crawl up in bed with you. It's not pleasant.

  3. Ewwwwww!

    I am one of those not afraid types. Growing up in the swamps of Florida you become a little jaded to creepy crawlers. My BF however is huge scaredy cat freakazoid over bugs, spiders, lint, that random piece of hair that tickles your skin, ect... I giggle at him alot because of it.

    Glad you survived.

  4. Growing up in Florida did nothing to toughen me up to the existence of bugs. My sisters don't mind them, though, so you may have a point.

    Don't underestimate the terrifying powers of hair tickling your skin! It might happen to you one day.

  5. You're the only one I know besides me that justifies. I have mixed feelings about it sometimes. I have a neurotic hang-up about having a jagged edge along the right, but I also have a neurotic hang-up about the way the words get spaced out unevenly sometimes when you justify. What to do? What to do? What cruel fate having conflicting neuroses!

    As for the picture placement, I've had that happen to me before when I've copied and pasted all the text in at once. It's like Blogger treats the whole thing like one big paragraph, and then puts it at the top. You keep saying, "No, HERE!", but it keeps going to the wrong spot like a retarded dog.

  6. I don't care about the spacing. I hardly even notice it. It's the jagged edges that get me. I can't stand them to be uneven.

    That stupid picture was annoying to the nth degree. I had to the HTML tab and move all the HTML by hand to get it where I wanted.

    And even then it messed up the spacing!

    Blogs are just hard on those of us with neurotic tendencies...

  7. I remember this post! It freaked me out back then too!

    Bugs are evil, creepy, and...well...EVIL!!! They should all be destroyed. The End.

    I still love the sign you put on the door to keep people out, though. It makes me laugh. :)

  8. Yeah, you were my lone reader back then, Candice. You're the only one who read this story.

  9. It's well worth reading again. :)

  10. I'm glad you enjoy it. I didn't at the time...but it's getting funnier.

  11. I fucking hate bugs...I feel your pain.

  12. Go ahead and call me an evil old basticule... But I laughed. Several times. And a few more times reading the comments. And I loved the sign on your door. I may need to make one for my office.

  13. Last night I had a dream, random things were happening, I am not sure why or when the event took place, but I was eating lunch at a school cafeteria. I had corn and some other things, but the freakish part of the dream was I remember having a pain in my upper lip. I felt around with my tongue and realized there was a corn kernel stuck in my lip.

    I reached up there and pulled out the kernel. It hurt more than it should have, so I looked at the kernel and noticed some kind of bug on the bottom and the kernel appeared to be its shell. Freaked me out! I don't think I can eat corn anymore, because of this silly dream. Anyway, thought I would share.

  14. Sar, I have many theories about the existence of bugs. Mostly they revolve around bugs being evil and out for world domination.

    Rev, you're not an evil old basticule. I said up there my grandfather was fighting to hide a smile, and my family still laughs about this to this day. (Although why they find it so funny when they were too scared to go into my room to kill is beyond me.) Would you be the evil ninja assassin within?

    Scott, well that's the danger of eating corn off the cob. You never know what you're really eating. That being said...I'm pretty creeped out myself, now. I won't be eating any kind of corn until I can get that image out of my head. Wish mine had been a dream. That would have been easier to get over, I think.

  15. Oh. My. God. I feel like things are crawling on me as I type. I'm so, so sorry that happened to you. For the record, I don't leave my windows open. Ever. Found a wasp on my couch the other day and freaked. Probably came in from the back door. Why can't they stay in their world and just leave we humans alone?

  16. Wasps actually enjoy terrorizing people. It's the sole reason for their existence.

  17. After reading and rereading this story and especially the comments between you and Bryan afterwards I just had to shake my head. Even though I look at the title every day sometimes I forget how fabulously neurotic you really are...

  18. Here in Chicago, we've got millipedes. I use a homemade cricket bat from my Shawn of the Dead Halloween costume to slay the little bastards.

  19. Rev, there is no limit to my neurosis. Sometimes I like to lure you into a false sense of normalcy...but there is ALWAYS madness lurking beneath the surface. Never forget that. (But seriously. Bugs are just gross. And justifying is the best thing EVER!

    Beer, millipedes have more legs. Therefore, they are probably a million times worse. *shudder* I think it is safe to say I will never visit Chicago. If you squishy them, don't they make the nasty crunch or squelching noise? I don't think I could do that...assuming I ever got up the nerve to face a bug long enough to squishy it.

  20. If I didn't suspect that you were a real person, I would swear that you were some sort of weird amalgam of all the girls I have ever dated come to life. I know it's a dubious title. But you are the archetype of any girl who could put up with me for more than five minutes. Scary.

  21. I promise I am a real person and not at all some sort of weird scientific experiment in which some evil psycho combined all of your ex girlfriends to make one crazy person.

    I promise.

    I am real.

  22. In Arizona we have scorpions, sneaky little poison bugs. Apparently, the smaller they are the worse they are. I feel you bug pain.

  23. I've heard scorpion stings are pretty painful. I hope one never crawls into your home. Or shoes. I hear they like to crawl into shoes.


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