The Sad Fate of the Male of the Species

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As soon as we arrived up at the house at Blueblood on Sunday, my sharp-eyed mate, Mike Cassell told me of an impending natural event that I would not want to miss. He guided me to the front of the house where a large female spider had built her web. A small male on the make was cautiously walking around her. We watched him circle the female several times. The tension in the air was intense.

Here’s a shot of the hapless fellow checking the scene:

Well, we all know how this is going to end, don’t we? All except the poor male spider. This takes me back to high-school. I was that most unusual combination of a slightly geeky guy with a truly boss set of wheels. This confused the girls. I was called “cute” which is the last word a guy wants to hear in a verbal description of him. Oh, how they loved the car, an Austin Heally. Many a cruise ended with, “Thanks for the ride. You’re cute.” Grrrrrrr . . .  And no phone number.

My problems were a picnic compared the the nasty surprise that this little guy has in store.

Here he is chatting her up. His palps are quivering and his forelegs are vibrating like crazy. One can almost detect the faint spider talk, “Hey baby, lookin’ for a good time?”:

Sadly, nobody has told him that this is a very poor pick-up line for a male spider to use. The problem is that it implies dinner and there is only one item on the menu.

About this time I blew the lunch trumpet. Really. We have an old bugle there at the house.

During lunch we discussed matters of more import, specifically, how to get Eunie out of the country as quickly as possible down to Cairns for a thorough medical exam. I have decided, after much internal debate, that I’m going to go with her. We’re not expecting anything dramatic. It looks for the moment that the worst outcome might be to stick in one of those little clipper-snipper things through a hole the size of your pinkie and yank out her gall bladder. She is looking pretty yellow. Up until this morning I was still thinking that I would just be in the way and it costs a bundle and who’s going to take care of things here at the office and blah, blah, blah, one “reason” after the other to act “responsibly”.

Then, this morning, I got my head screwed on straight. Where do you belong when your spouse is sick? Duh! I’m going to Cairns. Everything else can take care of itself. Hey, if I dropped dead in my chair right now, the world would go on, eh? (At least I think  it would, but that gets into a philosophical discussion for which I’m not prepared at the moment. Maybe later. It will be fun.)

Anyway, let’s get back to the drama of the spider and her unfortunate lover. (That would make a good title for a novel – The Unfortunate Lover.)  *

What we did not know was that the spider love fest had already reached its conclusion and the female was enjoying her  lunch:

Clicking on this will reveal a quite graphic view of the lady spider devouring her former mate.

Well, if I had the time today, I could do a few paragraphs of allegorical humor and anecdotal musings connecting this to the existential value of maleness. I mean, really, how many of us do you need? How big do we need to be? Do we require brains at all? Should anybody care a whit what we think? Much of nature zips along quite nicely with none of the mess of males casting about for means to perpetuate their macho selves and fouling the air with testosterone fumes.

Food for another post.

There is a terrific potential bonfire stacked up on the beach. This spot attracts a lot of driftwood. We will probably start dragging it up on higher ground soon so that it can be well dried so that we can have have a huge fire at Christmas time. For a little stress relief, I decided to take a couple of pictures:

An interesting thing in this shot is the green sand. The sand itself is not really green. It is covered by a thin film of algae.

As a tip of the hat to the possible discovery of US$200,000,000 worth of Ansel Adams glass plate negatives (which I can’t wait to see!) I decided to do another shot in monochrome.

I think that I like it better.

*  There is a poem by Andrew Marvel bearing that title. After a couple of read-throughs, I decided that I didn’t understand a single word. I did a little checking on the web. I don’t feel so bad now, because it seems that nobody else understands it either. I’m feeling much better about my own poems now.

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4 Responses to “The Sad Fate of the Male of the Species”

  1. Alice Says:

    Really like the black and white of the drift wood. I will be praying for Eunie. I know you will keep us posted!!

  2. MadDog Says:

    Alice, I grew up in a stinky photographic darkroom. I still like the look of monochrome for some shots. I’m going to have to do more.

    We are flying to Cairns on Wednesday morning. Eunie has an appointment on Thursday morning. She really does’t feel very sick, but when someone is that colour, you have to get them out of the country. I will certainly keep everybody in the loop. – Love – MadDog

  3. Christopher Polis Says:

    Messersmith.. long time since I’ve heard that name. Pretty sure we visisted a few times when we were in Madang, but I was somewhat younger then and everything is a little hazy.

    We (Eric, Esther Polis, 3-4 kids) were in Madang from early 83 till late 86, and I have wonderful (if sparse) memories of my time there.

  4. MadDog Says:

    Yes, Christopher, I do remember the Polis family. That takes me back a long way.