The other night I had a dream that someone threw a tarantula on me. I woke in a cold sweat, even now, as I write this I get the shivers thinking about a big hairy spider being thrown on me.
It took me back ten years to when I was 17 and working at Eagle Hardware. I worked in the gardening department which was awesome. As I worked there I learned that one of the cute Vietnamese twins, Jake, had a crush on me. Score!!! A boy liked me, how was I to proceed? Should I go flirt with him so he knew that he had a chance with me (conceded, I know)? Should I completely ignore him so that he would want me more? I was new to this game called Love so I didn't really know the rules or how to play.
I did end up flirting with him, at least I think it was him. He and his twin were identical and if I can be completely honest with you, I couldn't tell them apart. It was a time like this that I really appreciated the "mandatory" name tags that the store had.
When Jake finally drew upon his courage to ask me out, I said yes but told him that we should go on a double date. My best bud JD could appreciate a good looking Asian man as well I did so I figured nothing would be better than her coming with and Jake could bring his brother (I don't remember his name). We ended up spending an awkward few hours going to a movie. JD and The Twin didn't hit it off like I had hoped. Jake and I were really really uncomfortable and only really said "Hi" and then "See ya" after the movie was over. I don't think we even sat next to each other at the movie, I do believe we sat in the same row at least which was good.
Most of the time we spent talking was at work while we were stocking shelves. Our conversations were deep and meaningful, we talked about me. I give credit to Jake for his instinct to flatter my vanity.
At one point our conversation turned to dislikes. I will tell all of my blogging BFF's the same thing I told Jake: I'm not afraid of spiders, I just don't like them.
I told Jake that one day I would like to face my fear...I mean, dislike, and buy a tarantula to help me overcome my "dislike" towards spiders.
A week later I was working in the fertilizer aisle when Jake excitedly walked up to me and asked me to come with him to his car. Cool, I thought, maybe he'll give me some flowers and chocolate and I'll get my first kiss. We walked to his car where he ceremoniously pulled out a box covered with a cloth. How exciting, I began to prepare a gracious speech on how much I loved chocolates and how he shouldn't have. My speech would end and there would be a sweet, romantic kiss followed by fireworks.
He pulled of the cloth and I found myself face to fang with a Chilean Rose Tarantula. It was trying to crawl up the plastic wall that was it's home. I strategically grabbed Jake's muscular arm as I "pretended" to get dizzy with fear...I mean, dislike. The only thing that kept me from hitting the ground was that Jake would try to save me which would mean he would drop the thin little plastic box holding my new pet. There was no way I was going to pass out and wake up to a shattered plastic tank and huge hairy spider sitting on my face, staring down at me. I looked a Jake thinking that he was crazy and forced a big smile. "Oh, a tarantula" I said "you really know what to get a girl to make her feel special." At the time it didn't know how lucky I was to have a guy really listen to what I want, the problem was I didn't really want a tarantula. Jake held out the tank for me to take. The spider was again trying to crawl up the wall, planning it's escape. Taking a deep breathe I grabbed the handle of the tank, patted Jake his muscular arm and began my shaky walk back to work.
Things never ended up happening with Jake. It was my fault, my fear of commitment and perhaps my fear...dislike of spiders. Don't beat yourself up about it Jake, it was me not you.Incidentally, I named my spider Mikey (I should have called it Jake) and though I finally reached a point that I could pick it up and hold it, I never really got to a place where my hand would stop shaking as it's hairy legs walked up my arm.
Monday I was laying on the floor when out of the corner of my eye I saw movement on my blanket, a spider. In less than 2 seconds I had thrown off the blanket, leaped on the couch and tore my shirt off in one fluid motion. Nate didn't even know what happened, all he knew was that one second I was sitting next to him and the next second he looked up and his wife was standing on the arm of the couch with no shirt on. Then I made him kill the spider.
Have I gotten over my fear...dislike of spiders? Nope, I've just learned to move faster than they can.