Challenge #00942-B211: Skewed Threat Assessment

Someone aware of how beneficial, on the whole, spiders are to humanity asks why there is such a disconnect between the threat posed by and reaction to spiders as opposed to the threat posed by and reaction to mosquitoes.

(Let’s ignore the Sydney Funnel Web, for the purposes of this discussion)

“Statistically speaking,” allowed Nik, “your species has more to fear from the Mosquito than it does any arachnid. Or pseudo-arachnid, for that matter.”

“Logically,” countered Shayde, “ye got a point.” She was perched tensely on her stool, on the very verge of bolting for cover. Her gaze was trapped by the presence of several very fat Oshits in a holding cage. “But if ye put that lot anywhere closer to me, I’m off.”

“Oshits are proven harmless! They can not pierce human skin.”

“Still no’ takin’ the chance. Keep those fookers awa’ from me.”

Nik kindly scooted the cage further away from her. The Oshits inside, stimulated by the shift in air patterns, attacked everything they could reach.

Shayde murmured an note of pure disgust and leaned a little further away from the cage of dispute. “Look, I’m only here because ye said ye had a way tae eat them. Ye never said they’d be alive beforehand.“

“I’m rather concerned about you,” said Nik. “The universe’s bounty is meant to be shared. Insects are easier to farm on an industrial scale than mammals and avians, yet your diet is intensely arthropodophobic.”

“Aye. I’ve been taught tae see insects as filthy, ye ken. In my time, we spend all of our effort on gettin’ rid of ‘em.” Shayde managed to pluck up her courage enough to sit herself more comfortably on the stool. “But after the fifth time one o’ those little shits jumped on me face, I’m willin’ tae take me revenge any way I can get it.”

“Revenge feasting…” said Nik. He waved the steam from his wok towards his nose. “An interesting concept. But you still have not answered the quandary. Why are you less afraid of mosquitoes than you are of spiders?”

“Ye seen a mosquito move, aye?” she said, tracing a slow path with a dark fingertip. “When ye can see ‘em coming, they sneak up on ye. Spiders come at ye like ye just insulted their firstborn. And their bites are more… ah… immediate.”

“So there is room for a disconnection. I see. My apologies. It is time to fry them.”

The cage, boiling with excited Oshits, opened directly over the pan. They exploded outwards, attacking the steam and falling into the hot oil below.

Shayde had to pay a fine for Public Disturbance. It is not appropriate to shout, “DIE, YE LITTLE BASTARDS!“ in a restaurant. Especially not that gleefully.

[Muse food remaining: 15. Submit a prompt! Ask a question! Buy my stories!]