There is a small community of spiders living outside our front door (I guess it’s kind of a large community, if you’re me).  There are about half a dozen webs of varying sizes, with spiders to match.  The biggest one is pretty big, and she’s closest to our door.  I swear that every evening when she emerges and I get a look at her, she’s grown a little larger.  At this point, she’s pretty much reached critical unsquishable mass, and she’s been there for long enough that it feels like she more or less deserves to be there.  Plus, I figure she’s eating all of the bugs that hang around outside our door at night.  But still.  I’d hate to run into her in a dark alley.  I’ve taken to opening and closing the front door more gently than usual, so as not to disturb her.

I worry that one day, thedoorbell will ring, and I will open the door to someone dressed like a deliveryman in a cap and sunglasses.

“Special delivery,” they’ll say in a raspy voice, and when I reply that we aren’t expecting a special delivery, they’ll whisk off the hat and sunglasses and it will be THE SPIDER and she’ll eat my face off.

Ours is an uneasy truce.