Spiders have not always walked (or is it crawled?) amongst us. In fact, it wasn’t until 1900 that they first appeared, in Paris as it were, at the home of two famous scientists.
It was in that year that one Marie Curie, fresh off some pretty heavy exposure to radium and polonium, was relaxing in her back yard with her husband and fellow researcher Pierre Curie, enjoying the evening breeze. There was a disturbance in the air, though, and it was harshing Mme. Curie’s vibes. What was causing this?
It wasn’t spiders. Rather, it was some crickets, doing what crickets do, namely chirping.
While Marie wasn’t always averse to the crickets’ song, on that particular evening she found it quite unnerving and unhelpful to her brainstorming about ways to apply her findings toward creating the world’s most perfect beef jerky. That being the case, she did the only thing she could and hurled the contents of her water glass toward the insects.
Being insects, the splash of water didn’t do a whole lot to them, at least that they initially realized. Then, as the sun came up and they rested, their bodies (exoskeletons?) started to undergo changes.
Mme. Curie’s water, tainted with all the radium and polonium coursing through her veins, had started a series of events inside the crickets’ bodies that would forever change the course of history. Those drenched insects would awake as something new altogether—the spider, destroyer of flying pests and other nuisances—while the Curies would go on to claim all the glory.
Despite such auspicious beginnings, spiders would, predictably, go on to have a pretty good reputation. That’s how auspicious beginnings often work. Sure, some are scared of the arachnids, but there are no crazy men calling for their wholesale eradication as they might do for, I don’t know, geese. Unlike geese, spiders serve a purpose and usually don’t deploy their fangs unless the situation absolutely demands it.
The Curies, on the other hand, well — I would not recommend testing radium.
You hurt my feelings. Prepare to die.
— Juliet Actually (@julietactually) October 23, 2016
DO YOU WANT TO DO A HUMAN SACRIFICE
[does stabbing and offering motion]
A SACRIFICE, DO YOU WANT TO DO ONE
— YUNG SPIDER GOD (@buttgh0st) January 16, 2015
*Does shot of polonium* Totally.
[sipping nyquil from a flask] Emotions are a choice.
— Piece (@Piecezilla) April 16, 2015
Let’s not get hasty.
I guess it’s true what they say, nobody likes a laboratory created super-intelligent donkey.
— Sir Tin Doom (@PajamaStew) February 2, 2017
You know what would’ve offered twice as many legs?
[pushes a wheelbarrow full of corgis into your office]
These can all be yours if you run away with me tonight.
— Some call me RZA (@jrza206) July 27, 2016
Maybe. What sort of haunting are we talking about here?
Do you want to hear a joke about ghosts?
— Meli P. (@meliburgh) February 1, 2017
Or you could just embrace your fears.
Side A of my cassette tape is music for making love to
Side B is my primal scream therapy course
I should label one of these sides…
— Zack (@Mr_Kapowski) February 2, 2017
This fear, for example.
You can’t be metal if your mom never shoved a thin glass vial of mercury into your mouth and said “if it breaks you die, so be careful.”
— Kndy Mins (@CallousBalzac) August 3, 2016
It’s only mildly terrifying and mostly inaudible.
I shudder when I hear your laugh of sheer delight.
— Mrs. Fitz (@PFitzpa) February 1, 2017
After the laughs of sheer delight, this happens, particularly when radiation is involved.
I just hope that my last words are: “So I think that went well…” just as something explodes behind me.
— Cam (@GinAndJif) February 7, 2017
Allow me to introduce you to a few scientists I know.
It’s not that I don’t want to be murdered. It’s simply that I want it done correctly.
— DarkerWillow (@DarkerWillow) October 5, 2015
Exposing various living creatures to radiation and seeing what happens?
You’re not the only one who does that thing you’ve been worrying about.
— Al Dente (@six_2_and_even) February 8, 2017
What did I tell you about scientists?
I’ve killed seven people today and it’s not even lunch time.
— Lamo Joe (@1Bad_Scientist) February 8, 2017
Look on the bright side, it also means you have the possibility to bring an entirely new thing into existence.
When my mother told me anything was possible, I didn’t realize she was making an existential threat
— Lars Frumperstall (@underalls) January 3, 2017
I think this is how Aquaman got his start.
You think I’m going to let some pesky allergic reaction keep me from what I crave?
*eats a bowl of bees
— Rev Thurl Ravenscrof (@2tickytacky) January 21, 2017
First comes radium, then comes bees, then comes sizing up these fellows to see if they make you weak in the knees.
Liven up burials by flirting with the grave diggers.
— Vodka n Tots (@Vodkantots) January 26, 2017
This was the original premise of Stephen King’s “It.”
Just once I’d like to see 25 tiny cars come out of a clown.
— Sondra Dee (@SondraDeeMe) January 20, 2017
Just keep telling yourself that as Shelob wraps you in silk.
So many figments.
So few imaginations.
— The Untastic Mr Fitz (@UnFitz) February 9, 2017
So you’re saying there’s not a giant spider?
No, this is YOUR descent into madness!
— Mrs. Dick Helicopter (@Hormonella) January 19, 2017
They glow, almost as if they’ve been exposed to something.
Some people are just too beautiful for words.
— Goddess Of Mischief™ (@AsgardianRose) February 8, 2017
*Throws entire water cooler at crickets*
I’m not actually this melodramatic in real life. I’m much, much worse.
— SHANtilly Lace (@theshantilly) February 8, 2017
If you’re in the market for a research assistant, I may know someone.
Me: I have catastrophe-like reflexes
Him: Don’t u mean cat-like reflexes?
*he can’t hear my answer; it’s drowned out by a natural disaster*
— She’sARealGenius (@ShesARealGenius) January 20, 2017
Why does he have so many crickets with him?
HONEY VAL KILMER IS AT THE DOOR AGAIN! YOU HAVE TO STOP HUMMING TAKE MY BREATH AWAY.
— Gian D’Oh (@GianDoh) February 7, 2017
Especially if you don’t know what he’s been notified of.
If you stop to think about it, “The attendant has been notified” sounds pretty ominous.
— MakeAmericaMEHAgain (@TheAleNevil) February 9, 2017
Bring it, just don’t bring any genetic abominations.
I challenge you to a duel using Rock’em Sock’em Robots.
I call red.
— Kimtopher (@kimtopher22) February 1, 2017
What water glass have you been drinking out of, Bob?
why is this funny commercial telling me to set fires are you guys seeing this
— Böb El Diablo Jänke (@Bob_Janke) February 5, 2017
That tends to happen, which is why you should always carry a box of spiders with you. Introduce a little chaos into the system.
I Fought The Law Of Probability And The Law Of Probability Won
— Jeff Newton (@yonewt) February 8, 2017
So entomology then?
My Jeopardy strategy depends entirely on all the categories being the opposite of geography.
— Annie Hatfield (@HatfieldAnne) February 7, 2017
It was into Pierre’s eyes. It’s partly why Marie was so upset at the crickets.
Me: Thinking deeply and staring off into space
*realizes I’ve been making eye contact with someone the whole time*
— Her Tall Boots (@fuzzlime) April 27, 2014
It’s not a tangled web, which is a feature, though also a bug.
I’m not looking to fill the void I’m looking to return to living in it
— sug knight shyamalan (@sug_knight) February 8, 2017
How to make Bruce Banner smile.
Let’s have some fun with that temper of yours.
— Miss Muse (@bevandeveire) February 3, 2017
If you bring the Hulk with you, no one will say shit.
It is apparently illegal to drive a WWII-era tank into a mall food court for an Orange Julius. Just passing along this information.
— Tragic Ally (@TragicAllyHere) February 7, 2017
But do they mutate into something afterward or nah?
The quantity of spiders you swallow while sleeping is no match to the number of fruit flies I swallow while drinking wine
— lunaticminge (@majesticminge) September 20, 2016
That which does not kill us, like irradiated water, makes us stronger.
Who wants to hear me read Nietzsche in a slow southern drawl?
— Rachel Noise (@Rachelnoise) April 6, 2016
Do you want ants? Because that’s how you get ants.
Making a shoebox house for 6’s Mouse & The Motorcycle project. Now theres powdered sugar & a dead barbie in his bed I maybe got carried away
— Graceful AF (@graceful_asfuck) January 13, 2017
It’s a mutant strain.
I can feel your drawl from here
— tankgrrrl (@speknyc) December 1, 2016
Okay, but don’t forget that movie “Arachnaphobia.” There are limits.
i’ll decide when it’s enough.
— The Getaway Girl (@The_GetawayGirl) February 6, 2017
Where’s Marie when you need her? No one solves problems like Mme. Curie.
if squids were land animals sometimes you’d be walking along and you’d look up and BAM squid in a tree
— spacegirl incognito (@iamspacegirl) February 3, 2017
Besides polonium and radium?
Pick your poison. Faster.
— Scorpicpanda (@scorpicpanda) January 28, 2017
They started out that way, but then Marie got ahold of them.
[Narrating documentary on cheetahs]
Now we see the cub chee…
*rips mic from lapel
THIS IS BULLSHIT! CHEETAHS ARE LEOPARDS! THEYRE THE SAME
— Frank Whitehouse (@WheelTod) February 17, 2015
But what if they’re researchers?
I can’t wait for my kids to meet their adoptive parents.
— Bryan With a Why (@doublewenis) February 4, 2017
Don’t dry off, the water is where the magic is!
I forgot a towel when I took a shower so I had to use a bath mat to dry off and that’s probably as close to being MacGyver as I’ll ever get
— EricaTriesToTweet (@SteussieErica) February 5, 2017
It’s where you’ll find the creepy crawlies waiting to do your bidding.
This warm weather makes me want to hang out in a gas station parking lot.
— liVsy (@liv_thatsme) February 6, 2017
Aren’t we all. *Pours rare earth metals into a flask*
I’m looking for someone to hex
— Megazord (@WaluigiLover) February 4, 2017
It’s okay, most things do.
I have a suggestion but it involves a little tiny bit of murder
— Baby Bionic Swayze (@buhsbaby_baby) January 19, 2017
All eight of them.
INT. SPACE MOUNTAIN – NIGHT
CAPTAIN: Prepare for takeoff
TAMMY: Your flowery words shall not tempt me from the arms of my beloved, good sir
— taffy bennington (@singwithTaffy) January 30, 2017
And when the day is done and it’s time for refreshment, don’t forget to keep on learning.
Me: *changes blender to low setting*
— Jawbreaker (@sixfootcandy) February 6, 2017
Sadly, Marie Curie never got the recognition she deserves for her contribution to the natural kingdom, although she did win a Nobel Prize in physics and gain some recognition for her other scientific accomplishments and wartime contributions to World War I.
Her legacy lives on, though, in our rafters and backyards, next to the light by the front door and sometimes behind our toilets. Regardless of where we encounter them, we must remember that while they were born in a radiation-laden explosion of angrily flung water, they’re not totally unreasonable and they do uphold their end of the bargain. Just make sure to give them a cool name.
I have an agreement with the daddy long-legs in my bathroom: I leave him alone & he only attacks pests that are smaller than me PLEASE BARRY
— It’s Abby. Yep. (@abbycohenwl) February 5, 2017