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Along Came A Banana Spider

A Brazilian Wandering Spider, the cause of costly hysteria.

There has been a great deal of press lately on venomous spiders.

The reason is that a number of dubious arachnids have been found in fruit items in various grocery stores across the USA and Europe.

Many of you may have detected a slight sarcasm in this article’s tone, and you are right

One incident involved a Black Widow being found among a bunch of grapes in Milwaukee. The woman who found it bagged it and took it back to the grocery store. The management reacted swiftly and decisively, removing all grapes from its chain stores in the Milwaukee area.

Across the Atlantic, in a separate incident, a British couple in Hampton found a cocoon of hatching Brazilian Wandering Spiders AKA Banana Spiders in one of their bananas. These spiders are considered to be the deadliest of all arachnids, though the couple didn’t know it at the time. All the same, they called pest control, who took care of the problem.

It wasn’t the first time these deadly creepy-crawlies had made their appearance in Europe. Across the Channel, two years ago, in Bexcbach, Germany, an adult Banana Spider was found among the bananas. The store was evacuated and fumigated, and, though the spider’s body was never found, it was presumed dead i.e. no longer a threat.

Many of you may have detected a slight sarcasm in this article’s tone, and you are right. The reason is that we are displaying a ridiculous disconnection with nature, as these incidents reveal. Finding venomous creatures in one’s food is not a laughing matter, but the extent of panic that stems from them is staggering, if not comical. In our effort to become hygienic, we have turned neurotic.

A single spider precipitated the shutdown of an entire store, leading to the mobilization of numerous departments

Some would deem it tragic rather than funny. How else can one describe the fact that a chain’s entire Milwaukee grape supplies were lifted (and probably destroyed?) because a black widow had been found in one of them? How about the red alert caused in Bexbach? A single spider precipitated the shutdown of an entire store, leading to the mobilization of numerous departments, from store management to pest control to the mass media and press, who descended on the scene of the crime to seek and destroy the threat at the cost of thousands of euros (save the money the media made from running the silly story). Isn’t that a little over the top?

On the upside, I think I just found the theme for 2014′s summer blockbuster: Along Came A Banana Spider, starring Charlie Sheen, as General Fox, Kate Winslet, as Prime Minister Albatross, Michael Fassbender, as Herr Wissenschaft, and the Tingly Bunch, an ensemble of defanged, method-acting spiders, who, once you get to know them, are a lovely bunch to hang out with. Director: Michael Bay. Special appearance: Chuck Norris.

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