I’m not easily creeped out by bugs or rodents. Cockroaches rarely give me the heebie-jeebies, and the willies generally avoid me unless the spider is especially large. Sightings of mice bring on nary a shiver — I think they’re cute. And bats? No big whoop. They’re little acrobats, furry and adorable, diving and swooping through our neighborhood each evening.

But somewhere in my house tonight there lurks a spider. It is black and hairy, and well over an inch long. I assure you I’m not exaggerating, because although I did not have the chance to kill the beast, somehow I managed to measure it. It so impressed me that I even pulled out my camera and snapped a few (very blurry) shots as it crawled across the vaulted ceiling of our family room, then described it in detail over the phone when my brother called. The moment I hung up I set about dealing with it, broom in hand to brush it off the ceiling, heavy shoes on my feet to stomp it lest it survive the banging bristles.

Only to find that it had crawled into a crevice I could not reach.

I decided to wait it out. I made breakfast, took a shower, surfed the internet. And then I looked up again, and this time it was gone.

Everywhere I go, I picture the giant creature crawling out between the cushions on which I sit, rappelling onto my neck from a corner of the ceiling, scuttling out from behind the flour when I reach into the pantry for dinner supplies. And judging by the crawling skin on my back at the very thought of the hairy monster lying in wait, I am apparently not immune to the jitters after all.

Update: Did a little research before bed. (Yeah, bad idea. I know. Google Images + Big, Hairy, Fugitive Spiders do not make for sweet dreams.) At any rate, I think it’s a wolf spider. Aren’t they lovely? Don’t you wish you had one hiding in your house right now, lying in wait for you to go to bed so that it can come out and do whatever wolf spiders do to their sleeping victims?