Some Things Just Shouldn’t Be Published

Scary Why don't they just report there were carnivorous worms found lurking in bottles of Austrian Gruners. It would have the same effect on me as this headline:

"Terrified Whisky Workers Find Venomous Black Widows lurking in Casks"

Great. But you want to hear the worst thing about this story of workers at a Scottish cooperage that had to deal with dirty, ugly, poisonous, scary, deadly spiders in barrels? It's this:

"Sub-contractors at the plant unload old wine
barrels which are shipped across the Atlantic and used to store whisky,
giving it colour and flavour. Five
spiders were found in the space of a week in containers from California
and two were identified by experts as black widows, which have a
distinctive red hour-glass mark on the lower abdomen.

They came from California! That's where I live.

Without tooting my own horn too much, I'm consider myself a pretty fearless guy. Hell, I was married twice and I still believe in love. But Spiders?? I don't do spiders. In the first place, they have eight legs. That's wrong by any measurement. They bite. They lurk in corners. They drop from ceilings Some sport hair on their backs and legs. I don't like spiders and now I learn they like to live in wine barrels. Worse, they like to live in barrels that had wine in them. Double worse, they live in barrels meant for scotch.

Now, of course I won't be swearing off California wine or Scotch any time soon despite this horrifying revelation. The stuff is just too good. But now I am forced to look closely at the wine in my glass and the scotch in my tumbler before I start sipping. After all: Spiders!!

Posted In: Personal, Wine Media


12 Responses

  1. Sonadora - September 12, 2009

    This post needed to come with a warning about the picture! Way to give me the creeps. I hate spiders. I’ll take my wine without the added protein thank you very much.

  2. MC - September 13, 2009


  3. wedding chair covers - September 13, 2009

    After getting bit by a brown recluse I also don’t mess with spiders.

  4. Francesco - September 14, 2009

    C’mon Tom give them some sympathy. Our insect population would be running rampant if it wasnt for them. You should be thanking spiders for eating all of the insects that potentially could have made it into a wine bottle. They eat more insects than birds do and cant even see you if your more than a foot away. Not to mention their venom can provide us with several medical uses and their silk is something to marvel at!

  5. Marcia - September 14, 2009

    Good Lawd! What a frightening sight for the first cuppa joe in the morning! Was that up ‘close and personal’ shot of Charlotte’s evil twin, Fangzella, really necessary? As a fellow arachnophobe I’d hate to have to add some Talisker to my morning java just to be able to brace up and read the rest of the post!

  6. Erol - September 14, 2009

    That sounds like a legit scene out of Arachnophobia! Thank goodness this wine lover is in New Hampshire, because I don’t do spiders either. I will probably have nightmares about this now.
    On a similar note though, I did find what looked to be droppings in a case shipped to me by a winery that will remain nameless. Not deadly, but I think about it every time I drink one of their cabs.

  7. Scott Wolfe - September 14, 2009

    Ya know…If you were better off not knowing about this, don’t you think others might be too? You just had to go and write this anyway, huh? Geez…!

  8. Dylan - September 14, 2009

    That’s certainly terrifying. I’ve had my share of run ins with a few snakes around the property here as well as spiders, but nothing as deadly as a black widow. By the way, Tom, you also left out how creepy it is to watch them move.

  9. dfredman - September 15, 2009

    Spiders don’t drink much (neither Scotch or wine) so there’s nothing to be afraid of.
    Carniverous worms, now that’s another story entirely…

  10. Wine of Month Club - September 15, 2009

    It’s not the spider’s that bother me as much as the fact that they are there. Makes you wonder exactly what live creatures they have to eat…..

  11. 1WineDude - September 16, 2009

    C’mon man – don’t be such a wimp!
    “This spider’s bite is much feared because its venom is reported to be 15 times stronger than a rattlesnake’s. In humans, bites produce muscle aches, nausea, and a paralysis of the diaphragm that can make breathing difficult; however, contrary to popular belief, most people who are bitten suffer no serious damage—let alone death. But bites can be fatal—usually to small children, the elderly, or the infirm. Fortunately, fatalities are fairly rare; the spiders are nonaggressive and bite only in self-defense, such as when someone accidentally sits on them.”
    Just make sure you don’t plop your rump down in those barrels and you’ll be fine! 🙂

  12. Perry - September 19, 2009

    To protect you wine from bugs and spiders you should check out
    Best Idea yet!

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