house centipede

house centipede by Bauerph
house centipede by Bauerph

There may be people who like centipedes…
~ William S. Burroughs
(The Western Lands)

Bugs!! Shudder!!! Yesterday I was sitting on the couch for a few minutes taking a break when one of these creatures, which I think must be a house centipede, ran across the living room, lickety-split, and disappeared under the couch. Needless to say I have not sat in the living room since! And reading up on them has not made me feel any better. Much as I avoid chemicals, I think I’m in the mood to buy some “bug” spray!

I had never seen one of these things until the 1990s when I was coming out of the laundry room in the basement and one confronted me in the hallway. It was a good two inches long and an inch wide! I grabbed what was handy, a can of hair spray (good a getting ink stains out of clothing), and started doing battle with the alien. It actually charged at me after I zapped it once. It finally died after tons of spray and I left the scene, shaken. When the family came home and I told my tale and went to show them the remains of the bug, it had dried and shriveled up to almost nothing, and they seemed a little skeptical of my accounting of the enemy’s size and speed and aggressiveness.

Am I losing my mind?

Sometime during the 2000s I was walking on the treadmill, also in the basement, when one of these monsters raced out from under the treadmill and made a beeline for a big pile of storage boxes. I tried to pretend I had not seen what I had just seen, and to get on with my life.

And now yesterday, my third sighting. Why me??? Why do they not come out to terrorize the rest of the family? First two times in the basement, then this time of the first floor. I’ll be hysterical if I ever see one up here on the second floor!

I have learned that house centipedes are not native here, but have arrived somehow from the Mediterranean region. That would be why I had never encountered one before. The only positive spin I can put on this situation is that apparently they eat spiders and ants and can eat a few of them at a time. Still I don’t like the idea of something so big and so fast lurking around my home. I startle way too easily… I had a LOT of trouble falling asleep last night.

Has anyone else ever dealt with house centipedes???

an amazing puzzle

Ralph Waldo Emerson
Ralph Waldo Emerson

The universe is a more amazing puzzle than ever, as you glance along this bewildering series of animated forms, – the hazy butterflies, the carved shells, the birds, beasts, fishes, snakes, and the upheaving principle of life everywhere incipient, in the very rock aping organized forms. Not a form so grotesque, so savage, nor so beautiful but is an expression of some property inherent in man the observer, – an occult relation between the very scorpions and man. I feel the centipede in me, – cayman, carp, eagle, and fox. I am moved by strange sympathies; I say continually, “I will be a naturalist.”
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
(Journals)