Last night, after a hard day in the fields, I was enjoying a glass of rye on the rocks while washing a big mess of rainbow chard from the north forty. I reached for the glass hidden behind the heaping bowl of verdure, took a sip, and–ptooey!–before my brain caught up with the sensation of something at once squishy, angular, and alive trapped between my tongue and lips. There on the counter in a crumpled, wet, chitinous heap sat one of the arachnids that have been inhabiting the spaces between the greens all summer. I’m not certain how long it was pickling in the booze–it might have been up to 15 minutes–but it was alive, though not skittering for its life. It staggered woozily onto the paper towel I offered, and after a few minutes began to tentatively clamber around, toweling itself off, I guess. That’s it in the photo, crouching under its own power but probably not fit to drive.
I’ve put less palatable invertebrates in my mouth, but it didn’t seem like it’d go well with tilapia. I left it outside on the windowsill and in a few minutes it was gone. Here’s hoping Jim Beam mutates it into a squirrel-eating superhero and not a horrible leviathan intent on exacting revenge against the human race.