Man attempts to kill spiders with a blow torch and burns down his house
If you're an arachnophobe like me, then there are few experiences in life as terrifying as having a gigantic spidering crawling around somewhere in your house. Maybe this is crazy, but I'd honestly prefer a burglar to be lurking around in my humble abode than one of those eight-legged freaks.
The worst thing is when they manage to scuttle under your bed, and you just think: "Should I try to scare it out of there? Should I just ignore it and go to bed? or will I have to go downstairs and sleep on the sofa?" The truth is, I'm such a wuss that I've ended up on the sofa more times than not.
The worst time was when an old girlfriend and I went on a road trip. We ended up staying in this Airbnb farmhouse in the country one night, and just before we went to be we noticed a gigantic arachnid clinging to a wall above our bed. We spent a terrifying hour and a half standing on the bed shrieking in fear, trying to use a bucket and broom to coax the spider down to no avail. I think if you'd given me a gun right at that moment, I could have happily unloaded a full clip of ammo into the wall.
So that's why I've got a lot of sympathy for the poor guy in Fresno, California, who this week managed to burn his own house to the ground in a futile attempt to kill a number of spiders which had invaded his property. The black widow spiders scared him so much that he decided to try to immolate them with a blow-torch. Predictably, the house soon caught alight and turned into a raging inferno. When the fire had become unmanageable, the fire department was phoned and a total of 29 firefighters were summoned to put out the conflagration.
Fortunately, our man was able to escape his burning home just in time property safely, and no-one else was hurt. It's not known if he managed to kill the spiders after all, but I'd say that he probably succeeded. Personally, I think calling an exterminator might have been cheaper. A spokesperson for the Fire Department stated: "I don't want to encourage people to do this, but that's what he did. The spider tried to get into the wall. He sprayed flames on the wall, lit the wall on fire, and that extended up to the ceiling. There are safer, more effective ways to kill a spider than using fire."
Spiders commonly enter houses during the fall, but it's not to escape the sudden cold, as many people believe. It's actually because the autumn season is mating time for spiders, and males are usually on the hunt for females. By mid-November, when the mating frenzy is over, most of them are far less daring and less visible. So next time you spot a creepy-crawly, please stick to a rolled-up newspaper: not gasoline and matches.