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Daily Archives: April 8th, 2013

Yes.  This is a post about spiders.  Well, not really.  Well, yes, kind of.  Let’s just say that there are arachnids involved.  And yes, there will be pictures.  You have been warned.

The other day, we were having a short team meeting in our giant shared cube at Client B (Clib henceforth).  While my boss was explaining some stuff to us, I happened to notice a fairly large arachnid crawling across a colleague’s back.  Note that I said “arachnid” and not “spider.”  I’m really not sure if it was a spider.  But it did have eight legs, so I know it was an arachnid.

Anyway, it was large; the abdomen was maybe 10mm across.  It was predominately brown and it these weird, spindly, long legs.  I mean, spiders often have long, spindly legs, but the legs of this arachnid was just…strange.  And the other rather strange thing was that there was this weird striated pattern over the abdomen.  What it really looked like to me was an extra large, decently well-fed tick with over-long legs.

Of course, I couldn’t really quickly explain all this to my colleagues while I was watching this thing crawl across this guy’s back.  Actually, I probably could have.  I watched this thing saunter across his entire back and I only said something when it had gotten to his sleeve.  It looked like it was going to continue onto his arm and I was pretty sure that would cause him to start, which I didn’t want.  I was also waiting for someone else to point out this giant thing crawling across his back.  I seriously could not believe no one else saw it.

Anyhoo, I rather causally mentioned to my colleague that there was a giant spider-thing crawling on him.  He immediately stiffened in surprise and probably, a little fear.  My boss fairly calmly agreed with me that it was quite large.  My sometimes PM immediately freaked out.

To his credit, Mr. Arachnid didn’t panic at any time.  He rather urgently asked me where the spider-thing was.  I told him it was on his sleeve.  He asked me to get it off of him, so I asked around for a cup or container to catch the spider-thing in.  It wasn’t because I wanted it for a pet.  It’s because Clib has instructed all it’s employees, regular or otherwise, to catch all pests to be identified.  They have a really stringent pest control program.  So I needed to find some kind of container to catch the spider-thing.

My sometimes PM offered me his full cup of ice water.  Which is not very useful.  Because it’s a full cup of ice water.  He really wanted me to use it.  I tried to explain to him that I couldn’t use a full of cup of ice water.  Mr. Arachnid grabbed his coffee cup and chugged all the coffee and shoved the cup at me.

By this time, the spider-thing had made it off his sleeve and was comfortably resting on his chair.  I told Mr. Arachnid that he could move away from the chair (which he did with alacrity…ALACRITY!) and I tried to get the spider-thing into the cup.  My teammates did not offer to help.  (Actually, now that I think about it, my boss may have.  But I was already going for the spider-thing, so it didn’t really help.)

The spider-thing made a thump when it fell into the cup thing.  I had three guys yelling at me to quickly cap the cup.  It was pandemonium (not really).

So, the thing with me using the used coffee cup to catch the spider-thing is that the spider-thing got really wet with the bit of coffee that was left at the bottom.  That made it anxious on top of the anxiety of being shoved into a cup.  I couldn’t get a picture of it.  So I had to rely on memory to try and figure out what it was.

In the end, my guess is that it wasn’t a spider but an opilione.  There doesn’t seem to be very much information on them, but they are an order of arachnids.  They’re sometimes known as “daddy longlegs,” not to be confused with “daddy longlegs” or even “daddy longlegs.”  I actually only ever associated the name “daddy longlegs” with cellar spiders.

I couldn’t seem to find exactly the opilione that I saw, or even find a list of opiliones that are found in the Southern California area.  But it looked kind of like this.   There are pictures after this. You have been warned.