Sunday, June 1, 2008

Camel Spider

I have now truly been to Iraq. I have seen the quasi-mythical camel spider. I say quasi-mythical because the creature soldiers tell stories about and the actual beast are pretty much two separate things. The one I saw was just scuttling alongside the path to the bathroom the other night. It was pretty creepy, but I managed to refrain from stomping it. And I'd still prefer that to a scorpion. Haven't seen any of them yet, surprisingly. I would have imagined this place to be crawling with them.

So let me let you in on a little secret, should you ever find yourself out here in the desert. I haven't actually needed this advice, due to the aforementioned lack of scorpions and seeming rarity of camel spiders in this area, but I figure I'll pass it along. Apparently some soldiers like to pull a fast one over on the new guy by taking bets on a staged battle between a camel spider and a scorpion. After all the horror stories he's heard about them, the new guy will always bet on the larger, more fearsome-looking camel spider. But here's the secret: scorpion always wins. There. I just saved you 5 very hypothetical bucks.


Elephantschild said...

So, did you ever drop ants into the antlion sandtraps that were all over the place in Monrovia? Because that was fun, but we never thought of making bets off them.

Bi-Coloured-Python-Rock-Snake said...

Yeah. That was fun. I also like just collapsing the trap a little bit and watching them flick the sand out again.

There's antlions here, too. But they're lazy, because I haven't gotten a reaction yet.

Thursday's Child said...

Please just keep those "spiders" with you over there. Yuck! Can I send you the horrible tarantulas they have in Lebanon? We discovered one on the wall behind our TV one morning. It was the size of my hand! Then it hid under the couch until Aunt got hold of it. She almost drowned it with bug spray and then beat it to death after she swept it onto the terrace. (If you ever need to kill one of those her!)

Elephantschild said...

I once killed a cockroach with a can of aerosol deodorant. Took 1/2 the can, but it DID die. Eventually.

It was in the girls' Locker room at the international school - it's a wonder the roach didn't die from the pre-pubescent screaming of girls.

Thursday's Child said...

LOL If it'd survived, it'd have been stone deaf!