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November 26, 2013 / philosophermouseofthehedge

After a cruise, a grape retreat.

On the chance that deportations are lax during the feel good holiday season, time to cruise on over.

Widows can hang around just so long without making a move.

Wishing for a little warmth for the cold winter.

Who this time of year doesn’t search for family, friends, that next spouse?

1920 vintage film scene of two gentlemen and a lady in pearls

Ah, fine company. See traveling is an excellent choice.
(1920″The Frisky Mrs. Johnson”Paramount/US PD

Fine to accessorize for New Years a bit early.

Seasonal celebrations are rushed so much now.

Sophisticated black, a perennial favorite.

With an  Auld Lang Syne motif of an hour-glass? Appropriate in so many ways.

Red is always good for accessorizing: sexy.

Always smart to travel with food.

You know how flights get canceled and airport food isn’t always vegetarian.

With a little luck and it’ll be new home for the holidays.

1950's Eva Peron. (Caras y Caretas 2236:PD/pub date/

Too festive? It’s too much isn’t it? The brooch. 
(1950.Eva Peron.Caras y Caretas,2236/PD:

Shouts of joy! Oh, shouts of some sort, anyway.

FYI. Small children and the elderly can be affected by the Black Widow’s poisonous bite. So if you find one, trap it in a jar and take it outside…to live with the other Black Widow spiders.

It’s only looking for a home….and perhaps a mate. Widows do get lonely.

That way, if it unfortunately succumbs to the cold, you won’t have a murder on your Karma list…

Although you did toss it out when you could have…..

Does intent count with spider deaths?

Accidental! Accidental!

Spiderman.Universal's Island of Adventure.Entrance 3:J.Thompson/

Who the Widow hopes to find? Certainly worth the immigration risk.
(Island of Adventure.Universal/Thompson/

Black Widow Spiders are pretty common here.

Yet another reason not to stick your hand under a log or rock/brick without kicking it over first.

And staying out of certain trees – that one tree we were told not to climb – ever – and it had such great branches. Stupid spiders.

Black widow spider. P.E.Moran/

Just in case you’ve never seen a Black Widow Spider.(P.E.Moran/

Thankful for small things,

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

1943 vintage picture of Carmen Miranda.

Girls, sometimes style is everything!
(1943.20th Century Fox. “The Gangs All Here”vintage movie trailer/US PD.



  1. Fearless Leader / Nov 26 2013 4:51 pm

    Happy Thanksgiving, Bro!


  2. easyweimaraner / Nov 26 2013 5:00 pm

    I Heard It Through the Grapevine…. we better celebrate our thanksgiving without grapes. Thanks for the information. Have a great Thanksgiving :o)


  3. Beth / Nov 26 2013 5:04 pm

    A nice green way to avoid pesticides, but … ummm… chemicals that can alter my DNA OR death. Tough call.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Nov 26 2013 8:04 pm

      One tough old bird relative once said.”I’m too ancient to worry about DNA and maybe the preservatives are what’s keeping me going – pass that on over here.” Thanks for rolling in to chat


  4. robstroud / Nov 26 2013 7:28 pm

    Great thoughts, as always. Now I’m off to buy my wife a brooch like the one you included above!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Nov 26 2013 8:12 pm

      My mother’s generation always purchased Christmas corsages to wear pinned to their winter coats in December…selecting the right on was always a big deal at the Five and Dime. Funny the things you remember. Hope your search is successful!


  5. Carrie Rubin / Nov 26 2013 7:39 pm

    Hmm, I’m suddenly not interested in eating those grapes in my fridge…


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Nov 26 2013 8:06 pm

      They do seem to slow down when chilled? (Double glove – double glove!) Thanks for picking up a comment. Hope you get a weather break for Thanksgiving!


      • Carrie Rubin / Nov 26 2013 8:38 pm

        Thanks. It’s pretty icky here. Not used to having snow so early! (And not thrilled about it either…)


        • philosophermouseofthehedge / Nov 27 2013 12:28 am

          It’s snowing about an 1-1/2 hrs drive from here in Huntsville – not all that uncommon, but it’s rather early. Our winter is usually Jan-Feb with snow around Valentines. They keep promising it’s going to clear….East coast better cover, then tie everything down between the rain/snow and the really strong winds. Brrrr.


  6. katecrimmins / Nov 26 2013 8:11 pm

    I drink my grapes from a nice bottle. Seems safer that way.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Nov 26 2013 8:13 pm

      And no worries about messy expiration date! Good plan. Cheers and thanks for picking up a comment to share


  7. Robin / Nov 26 2013 11:50 pm

    I’ve never seen a Black Widow Spider. Now that I know what they look like, I’d better have a look at those grapes I just bought. I like Kate’s idea, and may switch to drinking mine as well. 🙂


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Nov 27 2013 12:26 am

      While the hysteria about poisonous Black Widow Spiders may a bit overblown, there no better excuse to reach for the bottled version! Cheers and thanks for spinning over to chat


  8. EllaDee / Nov 27 2013 3:32 am

    Now if was Halloween the spiders would be the perfect adornment on a fruit platter… No matter, so long as they aren’t in the wine grapes, which is my favourite grape product 😉


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Nov 27 2013 3:56 pm

      You wonder if any just brushed off as Halloween decorations – the first report came in the first week of November! Creepy for sure, now. Thanks for sharing the grapes


  9. gingerfightback / Nov 27 2013 8:21 am

    You wouldn’t believe the fuss in the media when the spider was found. The UK is increasingly neurotic!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Nov 27 2013 4:00 pm

      Brought to you by people quick to fan hysteria? Actually all sorts of insects arrive with produce – no matter where it’s from. Used to worry about hairy tarantulas jumping out years ago. Maybe life has become to Disney-like for people. If the grid ever does go down like in the movies….
      Thanks for poking the comment pile


  10. roughseasinthemed / Nov 27 2013 8:31 am

    Good story. Incidentally, the third link to Huff Post goes back to the Daily Mail one. Anyway, when my partner worked on the dockyard in Sydney the walls were full of nasty funnel webs. The dockyard had plenty of anti-dote but the best method was to avoid touching the walls where they hung out. Going camping one weekend in one of the national parks there, a HUGE spider ran under my hand as I was leaning on a bridge. But to be honest, flying cockroaches freaked me out more.

    But it’s a bit like checking your boots before you put them on, always shake them out. Perhaps people will learn that we don’t always live in a sterile enclosed box.

    My neighbours gave me some grapes a while back from the son’s finca. Organic. No pesticides and no spiders either. Perhaps it is possible to grow grapes without either after all?


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Nov 27 2013 4:18 pm

      Shaking things and washing produce used to be done without thought…but people have gotten so used to someone else taking care of them and making the world squeaky clean, people have lost common practices….like how to wash hands, too?
      HA you actually looked at the articles. Sometimes I carefully select storytelling headlines/specific media sources to add – can’t get away from that marketing habit. It’s funny how much things link back to Daily Mail now (US media gotten pretty sad/rehearsed) It’s also funny that some people will immediately grab anything from HP when they won’t look at other sources – not realizing the info comes from ones they “never read”. (The net must remain free or information/news will be managed and all will be worse off)
      Bugs are found on produce. Didn’t used to be a surprise. Our family always had a big garden. After my dad retired he had an even bigger one – we used to joke he should have a produce stand. The neighbors and local food bank benefitted. We were always taught to shake shoes, too – spiders, ants, scorpions, centipedes….Newcomers probably don’t think about it – and they probably don’t kick over logs/rocks before picking them up either. Now houses are built much tighter, so I guess the kids don’t see invading insects as much.
      But yuck- flying cockroaches are horrid…they always charge right towards you – that can’t be coincidence every time!
      Thanks for sharing the cool spider encounters! (Lots of big webs are creepy -but it’s the docks…even the rats can be abnormally large….run Fluffy – you don’t stand a chance.)


  11. Sun / Nov 27 2013 3:45 pm

    how interesting…fine way to put black widows across the country. traveling in grape style – i wonder if they get to ride first class or coach 😆 or if they sup and drink fine wine??


  12. jmmcdowell / Nov 27 2013 9:26 pm

    Yes, I think I’m all for drinking grapes, too, at this point! What will happen next year, I wonder?

    Handle all food with care tomorrow, and enjoy the holiday!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Nov 28 2013 8:03 pm

      No unexpected guests in the fruit salad! Hope it cleared for Thanksgiving. We actually had frost and the coldest Thanksgiving morning in over 20 years…but it doesn’t slow dogs down.Cheers and enjoy the day


  13. PiedType / Nov 28 2013 12:14 am

    Sorry, but my “Be kind to animals” policy does not extend to arachnids in my home.

    Wishing you and yours a wonderful Thanksgiving!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Nov 28 2013 3:36 pm

      Everything in its’ place…spiders not in the fruit salad! Hope your Thanksgiving is full of fun. Thanks for gobbling along


  14. jannatwrites / Nov 28 2013 5:24 am

    I’m not a fa of black widows (women or the spiders). I used to enjoy grapes, but maybe not so much after reading this. Yikes!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Nov 28 2013 8:07 pm

      There may be a new rush to buy special kitchen gloves for unpacking groceries now. I can just imagine all the possible horror story plot lines this creates…She was driving and almost home when…
      Thanks for spinning up a comment


  15. aFrankAngle / Nov 28 2013 12:07 pm

    Yep … heard about this issue … but it wasn’t told in your wonderful style.

    I’ve got a full plate at the moment, so I hope all is well with you. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours …. so here’s a musical treat from me to you.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Nov 28 2013 2:33 pm

      What’s an unexpected guest this time of year? Well, maybe not in the fruit bowl. Hope you and yours dance gracefully through the day. Holding you in our thoughts and prayers. Thanks for bringing a dish to the comment table


      • aFrankAngle / Nov 28 2013 3:08 pm

        You know how to deliver a smile! Thanks.


  16. LifeOfBun / Nov 29 2013 12:48 am

    That’s so creepy to think.. we don’t have any venomous creatures out here I think for whetever reason. Actually I should look that up, I wonder. Happy Thanksgiving!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Nov 29 2013 5:37 pm

      Sometimes better just to not know – less worries? When I was little and bananas were just being imported from S. America, it was all about discovering tarantulas in the cargo…shiver. I hate those hairy little things…they jump…actually found out they live in the woods here, too…who knew? (They jump! They jump! UGH)


      • LifeOfBun / Nov 29 2013 6:48 pm

        Hahaha xD they jump! THEY JUMP! Yeah jumping spiders creep me out as well. I always try to put them outside, but then one just jumped toward me as I was trying to catch it, as in toward my face. I never ran so fast, not even for school back in the day.


  17. The Hook / Nov 29 2013 7:45 pm

    Is there an award for most original blog on the web?
    If there is, you’re a shoo-in, old friend!
    Nice work!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 1 2013 8:20 pm

      Really needed to have the Raisins singing “Heard it through the grapevine” in the background – but there is just so much available time. Hope your writing is progressing.(next year: buy the best seller and get a tshirt?). Thanks for leaving a comment in the bunch


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