Recently, the British media has been in a frenzy (when are they ever not?), over the apparent surge in the UK population of the false widow spider... Typically, people up and down the country are now petrified of this new frontier of deadly arachnids, because quite simply, they're being sold a bunch of striking lies.
When a spider scurries into a room in which I am stationed, it generally carries on scurrying, blissfully unaware of my presence, the nonchalant little shit. I, on the other hand, start squealing like a stuck Alan Carr, get all of my feet - ALL OF THEM - up off the floor and start frantically searching for my slippers.
To coin a phrase from a former Princess, there are three people in my marriage. Me, my lovely wife, and a fictional schoolboy wizard with a lightning bolt scar on his head. A Mr Harry James Potter. I even know his middle name. He is a constant presence in my home, a menacing bespectacled spectre in my day to day life.
I measure the arrival and progress of Autumn by one simple thing. Not the changing colours of the leaves. Not the darkening evenings. Not the increasing wind and nip in the air. Not even the shops stuffed with Halloween costumes. No. I measure the arrival and progress of Autumn by how many times I have to leave the room in a cold sweat because of a spider.