Just when I thought the news couldn’t get worse– yet another Covid variant AND Maury Povich retiring so how will those fools know if they’re the daddy or not?–I learn there’s something even more worrisome practically knocking on my back door.

    If you guessed Joro spider, well, you’re lying because how? If you don’t know what the Joro spider is, just know this: Scientists describe it as “roughly the size of the palm of your hand.”

    Ima need a likker drink.

    OK, I’m back.

    Writing in the journal “Physiological Entomology” (which I like to gently fan on my coffee table alongside “Southern Living,” don’t all y’all?), scientists pronounced the giant hand-sized spider could “take over much of the East Coast in the coming years.”

    OK, well that’s not so bad. Wait. What? In a story about the Joro spider in USAToday, scientists had this advice: “Learn to live with them.”

    Well, sure. I mean killing them would require a shoe waaaaay bigger than anything in this house and also, heart attack.

    How did this happen? Apparently the Joro spider, native to Asia, hitched a ride on a container ship nine years ago and ended up in Georgia where it immediately regretted being a Democrat.

    “They can (also) hitch rides on vehicles,” a scientist told reporters. “One got all the way to Oklahoma.”

    The way he said it makes it sound as if the Joro was standing out there on the side of the highway, one leg waving, another clutching a tattered bag of Funyuns some human had tossed out. The other six legs performed the same duty as a D.O.T. road crew, which, and I’m quoting directly from the official manual, is to “just look, like, super supportive of the two people who are actually working.”


    I’m being silly, of course. Naturally the Joro spider wasn’t large enough to literally hitchhike. But at some point, the giant demonic turkey platter-sized spider apparently stowed away in the fam station wagon. Oklahoma or bust! Said no one ever.

    Scientists proclaimed the arrival of the Joro spider “pretty sobering” which, for such a famously emotionally unavailable bunch is like a regular person saying “We’re all going to die. Full stop.”

    But let’s get back to a quote from University of Georgia researchers: Joro “could take over much of the East Coast in the coming years.”

    I’m going to need a little more info, Professor Scarypants. What do you mean “take over”? Are they going to run for school board? Buy all the toilet paper when there’s a hurricane coming? Park their massive carcasses onto two spaces when they go to the movie theater? Define “take over.” Give two examples. So I can sleep ever again.

    There is some good news: The giant, big as the hood of your full-size SUV spider, is not poisonous. I repeat. The Joro spider is not poisonous. Although they do secrete venom, their pinchers aren’t big enough to pierce human skin.

    Remember that, Georgians, when you wake up in the night and there’s a Joro spider on your chest trying desperately to inject you with its probably not toxic venom.

    I believe we will all sleep better now, am I right?

    No of COURSE, I’m not right. This is terrifying. I live a mere five hours from Georgia. And, yes, it is all about me.

    Scientists are convinced we can live in harmony with the spider they routinely describe as “massive and colorful.” Which are the exact words I recently used to describe what one sees puddled on sidewalks when visiting New Orleans at Mardi Gras. Or ever.

    Scientists say if a web is in the way, simply remove it and relocate it. Crazy talk. Why not just invite Joro inside for snacks? He can bring the Funyuns.