OK, this little story is too bizarre to not blog about.
So, first, a little background:
I hate scorpions. Hate them. Like, when I see them in the house, I want to call them names. (Well, I do call them names, but only when no one else is around, and I’m not afraid to admit that I have, on occasion, flipped them off.) Luckily, we rarely get them in the house, but when we do, it’s an event. Out come the camera, a jar to put it in, and of course, the shrieks and screams. (My younger sister hates them too, so whenever we get them in our houses, we always send each other a picture, I don’t know why.)
So the other day, right after BK got home from work and was being followed by the incessantly chatty Twin A telling him about her day, she was standing with him at the bathroom sink when she noticed it. A big, fat scorpion, right where I would be standing brushing my teeth just a few hours later.
We hadn’t seen one in a long time, and ironically, the day before, my mother-in-law gave me a bottle of her homemade anti-scorpion spray, a concoction of boiled orange oil or something. I just sprayed our exterior doorways with it that day, so either it doesn’t work or it drove them in.
So Twin A ran and got me out of the kitchen, I got the camera, Twin B got the Flip cam. For perspective, I found a nearby quarter and gingerly threw it down next to the little jerk (that’s one of my nice names) and took this picture:
I’m not sure what’s grosser—the scorpion or the hair all over the bathroom floor I noticed in this close-up photo. (I vacuumed the next day.) Anyway, my hero BK bravely slapped an empty peanut butter jar over it (we save them for this very reason) and then slid a piece of paper underneath that before flipping it over. He’s an expert at this technique. I am not. Once, when he wasn’t home, I found one crawling up the wall of the girls’ playroom—the ones that can climb walls, by the the way, are the most deadly, venomous bark scorpion. I got as far as putting the jar over it but didn’t think ahead about bringing a piece of paper or cardboard with me, and it took about 15 minutes for one of the girls to locate one, and then I got too scared to pull the jar off the wall. After about a half-hour of this, my arm was aching and shaking so badly that I just had to make myself do it. No more than 5 minutes later, BK walked in the door. Of course, I acted all brave and like it was no big deal when I told him what just happened.
OK, so back to the other night, and here’s where it gets weird. He puts it in the jar, puts a lid on it and Little Miss wants to hold it.
“Ewwww!” the twins and I say in unison. Making it worse, she was in shorts and had no qualms about holding the thing against her bare legs:
I know it was in a jar, but still. That was just creepy. She just kept staring at it and talking to it, even though I kept saying, “Ewww, put that down! Take it outside!” as I’m trying to make dinner amid the chaos. The weird thing is, well, besides the fact that our daughter was talking to a scorpion, that the girl enthralled with it is our girliest girl. She’s all about princesses, Barbies, hairstyles and beautiful singers, not deadly, venomous desert creatures! This is the girl who screams and turns ghostly white if a fly lands on her arm or there’s a spider in her bathroom.
Later that night, the twins and I were snuggled up on the couch watching American Idol. For some reason, Little Miss thinks that I am her sole property and no one but her should be sitting next to me. So she starts with the sad protruding bottom lip, then the tears, and then “Why are you guys sitting by Mommy? I get to sit next to Mommy!”
“I don’t see the girls all day long,” I said. “You get me all to yourself all day, so now it’s their turn,” I say.
Then the crying really starts, making us miss half the “Pants on the Ground” song.
I call BK into the room and ask him to sit with her, telling her, “Poppy wants to sit with you, he hasn’t seen you all day!”
He scooped her up and started playing with her, but she wasn’t having it. She got up, took one longing glance at the girls and I on the couch, and then took off. A minute later, she came wandering back in, sad-faced and sniffly—with the scorpion jar cradled in her arm. She hopped back up into BK’s lap, sniffling and hugging that jar like it was a teddy bear.
It was all so disturbing yet hilarious yet crazy yet heartbreakingly sad all at the same time. “That’s soooo pathetic!” I said, as the twins and BK were practically convulsing with hysterical laughter. I wish I had snapped a picture, but I was just too weirded out to think about getting the camera.
By the next day, Little Miss gave it a name: Scorpia, and declared it a girl. When it came time to go pick up the twins from school, Little Miss insisted that Scorpia come along for the ride.
“NO WAY!” was my first response. The thought of driving around with that thing gave me the heebie-jeebies.
“But Scorpia is my friend, and I will be sad to leave her home all alone,” she pleaded with her sweet big blue eyes.
“Fine,” I agreed, super reluctantly. That sweet face makes me such a pushover.
I screwed the lid onto that peanut butter jar as tightly as I could and handed it to her. “Do NOT, under any cirucmstances, loosen this lid, and don’t shake it around,” I told her sternly, although why I cared if it got shaken up, I don’t know.
“OK, but can you carry her because I have my Barbie and I can’t carry her, too,” said Little Miss as we walked out to the garage.
“Fine,” I again said in my exasperated tone.
I buckled her (the child, not Scorpia) into her seat and handed her the jar for our journey.
Then she says, “Can you take her up front with you because my Barbie will be scared of her and I don’t want her to be scared, so you should bring her up front with you, OK?”
You’ve got to be kidding me.
“Fine,” I said, setting the jar into the console next to the drink-holder cups, hoping that it wouldn’t roll onto my flip-flopped feet and freak me out while I was driving.
When I got to the school pickup line, I texted BK, “OK, we need a dog. The scorpion now has a name and someone insisted we bring her to pickup.” I attached this picture:
I could not believe I was driving around with a scorpion in my car. Scorpia, by the way, was looking a little sluggish in her airtight jar. But I gave her a shake, and yep, she was still alive. Dang.
Later that night, the girls were watching Mulan, and this is how I found Little Miss:
“Why are our kids so weird?” I whispered to BK as I pointed her out. (We say this kind of a lot. He just said it on Sunday at church, when we noticed that Twin B had a stack of coins all bundled up in yarn to put in the collection basket. When I nudged BK and pointed it out, he whispered, “Why are our kids so weird?”)
When I told my mom the scorpion story, she said, “You guys need a dog.” It’s true, we do need a dog, and we’ve been in discussions about it for the past two years, but that’s an entirely different blog post.
Later that night, I noticed that Scorpia had been placed on one of the walls in the dining room. She had become part of the decor, right along with our granite and Venetian plaster. Everyone is going to want to jump on this trend:
“Um, that’s not staying there,” I said when I noticed. But then when I gave the jar another shake, I also noticed that Scorpia didn’t react. Scorpia had passed.
“Good, now can we throw her away?” I said, probably a little too callously.
“No!” shouted an on-the-verge-of-tears Little Miss. “Can we bury her in the back yard?”
“Oh, sure, because I have nothing better to do than to have a scorpion funeral,” I said.
“Can we? Can we have a funior for her? What’s a funior?” said Little Miss.
That was four days ago. She still has not been properly interred. Garbage day is Monday.
I’m thinking services will be held Monday courtesy of Waste Management. In lieu of flowers, we are accepting donations of jars.